USPTO’s summer indoctrination programs for intellectual property officials

This is the May to August schedule for the USPTO’s Global Intellectual Property Academy (GIPA).

Among the countries mentioned in the schedule are Ghana, Indonesia, Iraq, Japan, Kenya, Liberia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Nigeria, Philippines, Russia, Thailand, Ukraine and Vietnam. However, many of these events are regional or topical meetings that include officials from many other countries. The costs of these operations have to be fairly substantial.

May 2011

2-6, UPOV Train the Trainers at USPTO headquarters – View agenda
2-7, WIPO Workshop on Enforcement of IPR at USPTO headquarters – View agenda
8-13, International Science and Engineering Fair in Los Angeles, California
9-12, Advanced Patent Examination – Computer-Implemented Inventions at USPTO headquarters – View agenda
9-13, WIPO Workshop on Enforcement of IPR at USPTO headquarters
10-12, Seminar on Trademark Office Administration and Workshop on Design Protection and Examination in Thailand
11, US-Japan Judicial IP Appellate Seminar in Japan
16-17, GIPA IP Enforcement Program in Lithuania
17-20, Enforcement of IP Rights: An Interagency Approach with Private Sector Coordination in Kenya
18-20, Workshop on Identification and Interdiction of Counterfeit Medicines in Ukraine
23-26, Regional Seminar and Workshop on IP Management and Technology Commercialization in Kenya

June 2011

6, Claim Construction at the Federal District Court and USPTO headquarters
7-10, GIPA Enforcement for Public Prosecutors in Ukraine
7-9, GIPA Copyright Infringement in the Digital Environment in Ukraine
8-10, Intellectual Property Law and Strategic Management for Sustainable Economic Development at USPTO headquarters – View agenda
14-16, ASEAN IP Management and Technology Commercialization in Philippines
15-24, Multi-city IPAC II Program in Russia
27-July 1, GIPA Trademark and Geographical Indications Program at USPTO headquarters
28-30, US-Vietnam Bilateral Seminar in Vietnam
29-30, US-Malaysia Bilateral IP Seminar in Malaysia
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July 2011

11-14, Protection of Industrial Design at USPTO headquarters
12-13, Workshop on IPR and Enforcement for the Iraq Judiciary and Law Professors at USPTO headquarters
18-22, GIPA Advanced Patent Examination Program at USPTO headquarters
25-28, GIPA General Enforcement Program at USPTO headquarters
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August 2011

1-5, GIPA Advanced Trademark Examination Program at USPTO headquarters
1-5, Collaboration Workshop on Interagency IPR Task Forces in Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria and Liberia
1-12, USPTO-WIPO Summer School at USPTO headquarters
8-12, GIPA Policy, Legislation and Enforcement Program at USPTO headquarters
8-12, Patents and Technology Transfer Program at USPTO headquarters
9, John Marshall Law School Tour at USPTO headquarters
23, GIPA Customs Enforcement Program at USPTO headquarters
23-25, Fifth Symposium for Heads of Intellectual Property Academies at USPTO headquarters
23-26, Enforcement Practices Against Trade in Counterfeit Hard Goods in Indonesia
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In the past, KEI had to use the FOIA to request the lists of speakers at some sessions. Programs for some events are not transparent, and may feature industry lobbyists and consultants as experts, without presenting a range of views or balance in terms of the information presented.

For the programs that are provided from the USPTO, the lack of balance is evident. For example, for the WIPO-USPTO Workshop on Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights held in Washington, DC on Washington D.C., May 2 to 6, 2011, there were four private sector speakers. They were:

At a June 8-10, 2011 USPTO “Workshop for Legislators, Judges, and Government Representatives, on Intellectual Property Law and Strategic Management for Sustainable Economic Development,” the only identified private sector speakers were IP hardliners and industry consultants Michael Ryan and Michael Schlesinger.

Ryan is an IPR hardliner who is the Director of the corporate funded GWU Creative & Innovative Economy Center, and is an industry consultant who once particpated in the creation of an NGO called “EssentialInnovation.Org.” Essentialinovation.Org was an industry funded effort designed to counter public health NGO messaging on IP and health, and which used a domain name deliberately similiar to “EssentialInventions.Org,” a domain that I own, and that is used by an NGO that Rob Weissman and I am affiliated with that files for compulsory licenses on drug patents, and which supports various IPR and innovation reform policies backed by public health groups.

(The corporate front group EssentialInnovation.Org is now defunct. For background, see this 2007 press release).

Michael Schlesinger is one of the main lobbyists for the entertainment and publishing industries on IP enforcement.

These were their presentations:

Michael P. Ryan, PhD, Director, Creative & Innovative Economy Center, The George Washington University Law School

  • Case Study #1 – Commitment to Quality: A Look at the Columbian Coffee Growers
  • Case Study #2 – Profiles in Bio-Medical Technology: Brazil
  • Case Study #3 – Profiles in Clean Energy: China
  • Case Study #4 – Profiles in Film, Television, and Music Creativity: India

Michael Schlesinger, International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA)

  • The Role of Copyright in the Creative Industries: A Look at the Music, Movie, Software, and Publishing Industries.

Note, Under Arti Rai’s tenure at USPTO, Michael Ryan received $78,000 from USPTO for a cooperative project on “China Climate Change-Related Technology Innovation & Patent Policy.”

KEI has also been waiting several months for USPTO to disclose the recipients of millions of dollars in new grants to advise developing countries on IPR issues. A KEI blog on the fy 2009 grant is available here.