Intellectual Property Law

Intellectual Property Law

Innovation has made information, science and technology in their many varied forms dominant influences on society and the economy, and advances in biotechnology, computer science, nanotechnology, and digital art forms have accelerated the pace of change worldwide. Increasingly, creators, compilers, publishers, interpreters, remixers, commentators, users, consumers, appropriators and regulators of innovation must rely on the law of intellectual property to settle disputes.

The burgeoning field of intellectual property law encompasses patent, copyright, trademark, trade secrets and many other fascinating legal theories for protecting and regulating an expanding list of innovations and creations, including writings, music, art, dance, performances, architectural works, scientific and technical inventions, compilations of data, business models, brands, names used in trade, know how, business secrets, confidential information and even celebrity publicity. Knowledge of intellectual property law is now a fundamental part of a good legal education.

KU Law alumni include patent examiners at the United States Patent & Trademark Office and intellectual property attorneys at leading firms across the United States, such as Fish & Richardson PC; Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner LLP; Goodwin Procter; Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC; Hovey Williams LLP; and Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP.

Curriculum

KU Law offers a rich and expanding program in intellectual property law. Professor Andrew Torrance teaches a comprehensive survey course covering all forms of intellectual property protection. Professors Mike Hoeflich and Andrew Torrance offer specialty classes in patent, copyright, digital copyright, and biotechnology law.

In addition, Professors Raj Bhala and Andrew Torrance offer classes in international trade and biodiversity law, respectively, that include coverage of intellectual property issues. Any of these professors are available to supervise research papers on intellectual property topics sufficient to fulfill the school's writing requirement, and several previous student papers have been published in law reviews or garnered competitive awards.

Some of the courses offered in the area of intellectual property law include:

  • Intellectual Property
  • Patent Law
  • Copyright Law in a Digital Age
  • International Trade Law
  • Patent Practice

Course descriptions

The Patent Conference

The Patent Conference is the largest annual conference for patent scholars in the world. The conference is a cooperative effort among the University of Kansas School of Law, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, University of San Diego School of Law, and Boston College Law School to hold an annual conference where patent scholars in law, economics, management science, and other disciplines can share their research.

In 2010, the founders of PatCon — law professors David Olson, David Schwartz, Ted Sichelman and Andrew Torrance — realized that the growth and importance of research in the area of patents required an exclusive forum that would enable participants to share their research with other experts and explore links across the legal and business side of patents.

KU Law hosted the inaugural Patent Conference in April 2011. The conferences rotates among KU, Boston College, Northwestern and San Diego.

Written Description named PatCon among the top three intellectual property conferences in the United States.


PatCon9 | April 5 - 6, 2019 | University of Kansas School of Law

1535 W. 15th Street, Lawrence, Kansas 66045

The conference will be held in 104 Green Hall.

Speakers include:

  • J. Jonas Anderson, Professor of Law; Associate Dean for Scholarship, American University Washington College of Law 
  • Bernard Chao, Professor of Law, University of Denver Sturm College of Law
  • Chris Cotropia, Professor of Law; Director, Intellectual Property Institute; University of Richmond School of Law
  • Charles DeGrazia, Economist, Office of the Chief Economist at the United States Patent and Trademark Office
  • Tabrez Ebrahim, Associate Professor of Law, California Western School of Law
  • Michael Frakes, Professor of Law and Economics, Duke University School of Law
  • Dr. Lital Helman, Former Intellectual Property Fellow, Columbia Law School; Co-Founder and COO of GradTrain
  • Camilla Hrdy, Assistant Professor of Law, University of Akron School of Law
  • Dmitry Karshtedt, Associate Professor of Law, George Washington University Law School
  • Lakshmi Mudigonda, Ph.D. candidate, University of Buffalo
  • Kevin Noonan, Partner, MBHB; author of Patent Docs blog
  • David Olson, Associate Professor of Law, Boston College Law School; Co-founder of Patent Conference
  • Lisa Larrimore Ouellette, Associate Professor at Stanford Law School; author of Written Description blog
  • Nicholas Pairolero, Economist, Office of the Chief Economist at the United States Patent and Trademark Office
  • Jason Rantanen, Professor and Ferguson-Carslon Fellow in Law,University of Iowa College of Law; author of Patently-O blog
  • Greg Reilly, Assistant Professor of Law, Chicago-Kent College of Law
  • William Rich, Professor of Law, Washburn University School of Law
  • David Schwartz, Professor of Law, Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law; Co-founder of Patent Conference
  • Jeremy Sheff, Professor of Law; Director, Intellectual Property Law Center, St. John’s University School of Law
  • Ted Sichelman, Professor of Law; Director, Center for Intellectual Property Law & Markets; University of San Diego School of Law; Co-founder of Patent Conference
  • A. Christal Sheppard, Executive Vice President for Strategy & Business Development at IPwe Patents
  • Norman Siebrasse, Professor of Law, University of New Brunswick
  • Matthew Sipe, Visiting Associate Professor of Law, George Washington University Law School
  • Andrew Torrance, Professor of Law, University of Kansas School of Law; Co-founder of Patent Conference
  • Saurabh Vishnubhakat, Associate Professor of Law, Texas A&M University School of Law
  • Melissa Wasserman, Professor of Law, University of Texas at Austin School of Law
  • Ian Wetherbee, Senior Software Engineer/Manager at Google Patents
  • Jay Yonamine, Head of Data Science, Ops, and Quality, Global Patents at Google

Questions? Contact Professor Andrew Torrance at 785-864-9222 or torrance@ku.edu.


Special thanks to our sponsors

Hovey
Erickson Kernell Shook Hardy Bacon

Schedule

Thursday, April 4, 2019

6:30 Informal dinner at Burger Stand
803 Massachusetts Street, Lawrence, Kansas 66044
Vegetarian options are available.

Friday, April 5, 2019

8:00-9:00 Check-in and breakfast
9:00-9:30 Welcome

Andrew Torrance, Professor of Law, University of Kansas School of Law; Co-founder of Patent Conference
9:30-10:30 Roles and Influence of Patent Blogs

Moderator:
Camilla Hrdy, Assistant Professor of Law, University of Akron School of Law

Panelists:
Lisa Larrimore Ouellette, Associate Professor at Stanford Law School; author of Written Description blog
Kevin Noonan, Partner, MBHB; author of Patent Docs blog
Jason Rantanen, Professor and Ferguson-Carslon Fellow in Law, University of Iowa College of Law; author of Patently-O blog
10:30-11:00 The Rise of Commercial Patent Analytics

Speaker:
A. Christal Sheppard, Executive Vice President, IPwe
11:00-11:30 Coffee break
11:30-1:00 Panel One

Panelists:
Price Discrimination and Patent Exhaustion | David Olson, Associate Professor of Law, Boston College Law School
Patent Law's Latent Philosophical Schism | Matthew Sipe, Visiting Associate Professor of Law, George Washington University Law School
Global Patterns of Technical Knowledge Flow | Andrew Torrance, Professor of Law, University of Kansas School of Law; Co-founder of Patent Conference
1:00-2:00 Lunch

Luncheon Speakers:
Ian Wetherbee, Senior Software Engineer/Manager at Google Patents
Jay Yonamine, Head of Data Science, Ops, and Quality, Global Patents at Google
2:00-3:30 Panel Two

Panelists:
Obviousness: Before and After | Dmitry Karshtedt, Associate Professor of Law, George Washington University Law School
Saliency, Anchors & Frames: A Multicomponent Damages Experiment | Bernard Chao, Professor of Law, University of Denver Sturm College of Law
Patent Office Errors | Greg Reilly, Assistant Professor of Law, Chicago-Kent College of Law
3:30-4:00 Coffee break
4:00-5:30

Panel Three

Panelists:

Patents Without the Right to Exclude | J. Jonas Anderson, Professor of Law; Associate Dean for Scholarship, American University Washington College of Law 
Assessing the impact of patent litigations on the venture capital financing of young firms | Lakshmi Mudigonda, Ph.D. candidate, University of Buffalo
Comparative Patent Scope | Norman Siebrasse, Professor of Law, University of New Brunswick

5:30 Adjourn
6:30

Conference Dinner
John Allison to be honored with the PatCon Award for Patent Scholarship.

Saturday, April 6, 2019

8:00-9:00 Breakfast
9:00-10:30 Panel Four

Irrational Ignorance at the Patent Office | Melissa Wasserman, Professor of Law, University of Texas at Austin School of Law & Michael Frakes, Professor of Law and Economics, Duke University School of Law
Revisiting the Impact of USPTO Examiner Incentives: Learning and Patent Office Outcomes | Nicholas Pairolero & Charles DeGrazia, Economists, Office of the Chief Economist at the United States Patent and Trademark Office
The Surprising Value of Abandoned Applications to the Patent System | David Schwartz, Professor of Law, Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law
10:30-11:00 Coffee break
11:00-12:30 Panel Five

Panelists:
Crowdfunding and Patents | Chris Cotropia, Professor of Law; Director, Intellectual Property Institute; University of Richmond School of Law
Science Fiction: Fictitious Data in Patents | Lisa Larrimore Ouellette, Associate Professor at Stanford Law School; author of Written Description blog
Jefferson’s Taper | Jeremy Sheff, Professor of Law; Director, Intellectual Property Law Center, St. John’s University School of Law
12:30-1:30 Lunch
1:30-3:30 Panel Six

Panelists:
Artificial Intelligence Patent Examination & Big Data | Tabrez Ebrahim, Associate Professor of Law, California Western School of Law
Decentralized Patent System | Dr. Lital Helman, Former Intellectual Property Fellow, Columbia Law School; Co-Founder and COO of GradTrain
Patent Rights and State Sovereign Immunity | William Rich, Professor of Law, Washburn University School of Law
Inconsistent Intellectual Property Judgments | Saurabh Vishnubhakat, Associate Professor of Law, Texas A&M University School of Law
3:30 Adjourn

Hotels in Lawrence, Kansas

SpringHill Suites Lawrence Downtown

The Eldridge Hotel

TownePlace Suites by Marriott

 

Visit Lawrence.


Parking

Parking is available in the Allen Fieldhouse Parking Garage, 1501 Irving Hill Road, located south of Green Hall. Standard parking rates are $1.75 for the first hour and $1.50 for each subsequent hour. KU Parking has a License Plate Recognition System. License plates will be scanned upon entrance and exit. You must prepay in advance online or pay for parking upon arrival using a pay station or the ParkMobile app. More details from KU Parking.

Three payment options:

  1. Prepay in advance online: For your convenience we have arranged for you to securely prepay parking online. Click on one of the following links to register your car and pay. The parking fee is discounted for the two-day option.
    April 5 and April 6
    April 5 ONLY
    April 6 ONLY
  2. Use the pre-pay stations in the garage: Pre-pay stations can be found in the level 3 lobby in the NE corner of the garage and on level 1 in the south stair tower. Pull slowly into the garage and find a place to park, avoiding ADA/Limited mobility stalls without displaying a valid placard and reserved/service stalls.
    • Take a picture of your license plate or write your plate information down, and proceed to a pay station.
    • Be sure to pay for your parking within 15 minutes upon arrival through the gate, when your license plate is scanned, to avoid getting a ticket.
    • Choose how long you wish to park for and pay. Pre-pay stations accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and cash. Pre-pay stations are unable to give change. If you have to add time to your parking, you will need to return to the pay station and repeat the process again.
  3. Use the ParkMobile App: Visit https://parkmobile.io/ or download the ParkMobile app on your smartphone.
    • In advance of the event or, if necessary, immediately upon parking, create a profile using your name, email address and license plate number.
    • When prompted, enter the Allen Fieldhouse Parking Garage Zone = 3929
    • Choose how long you wish you park for and pay. You will be able to add and pay for additional time through ParkMobile without returning to the parking garage.

Past Conferences

Other Opportunities

Outside the classroom there are numerous rich experiences available to students interested in further pursuing their interests in intellectual property law. Students may join the Intellectual Property Law Student Association, which is run by students for the purpose of encouraging interest in their field by sponsoring interesting speakers and events.

KU Law can also help place students in externships and internships at the KU Center for Technology Commercialization.


Questions?

Andrew Torrance
Professor of Law
785-864-9222
torrance@ku.edu