Archive for June 2011

Transatlantic patent reform


Major decisions on patent system reform have very recently been taken on both sides of the Atlantic. Last week, the US House of Representatives passed a bill envisaging a move from a first-to-invent to a first-inventor-to-file system which would be the most significant change in US patent law since 1952. Indeed, this reform would bring […]

Fostering patent co-operation in Europe


The European patent system is a two-tier environment in which the European Patent Office is the single central authority empowered to grant patents for all our 38 member states whilst the national patent offices play an essential role in developing IP policies at local level. This complementarity between regional and local levels is not specific […]

Staff survey 2011


I have always regarded the EPO as a European success story. Starting with just 7 member states, the Organisation now has 38, with a total of 600 million inhabitants. The Office is processing more than 230 000 patent applications a year (the original long-term estimate was 30 000), and the high quality of its work […]

G8 leaders support a quality patent system


Last week in Deauville (France), the G8 held its 37th summit. For the last five years, its general statement has always included a reference to IP issues. Initially, the focus was on the fight against piracy and counterfeiting, but it has now moved on to more specific and technical issues. In 2011, the G8 leaders […]

A comprehensive IP strategy for Europe


On Monday 30 May 2011, the European Competitiveness Council discussed the Unitary Patent Protection project and the outcome represents one more positive step with the final adoption of the two regulations in sight. I am also very pleased that the European Commission has already launched a non-paper about a possible solution for the litigation system, […]