CIPA Congress, Lancaster London Hotel, London


The 16th Annual CIPA Congress boasted an impressive programme of important speakers, and witnessed lively debate on patent developments in the UK and further afield.

Roya Ghafele, director of Oxfirst Ltd and fellow of the Said Business School at Oxford University, put the challenges facing patent offices especially well: “Patent offices, as key players in a working patent system, need to adapt to massive increases in demand and accept the changing nature of scientific expertise as a result of new technologies.”

In the context of her speech, on crowdsourcing prior art search on the Internet, this rings true, but the general sentiment has wider applications across the intellectual property industry.

Many of the presentations at the CIPA Congress relied, either implicitly or explicitly, on a sense of what is possible with new technologies and their attendant ways of thinking. Everything from anti-counterfeiting efforts to the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) live or die on the quality of the technology that is used to implement them, and more importantly, on the ability of the participants to best harness that technology.

Conference call, CIPA Congress