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The University of Southampton
Southampton Law School

On the frontline. Protecting intellectual copyright around the world

Published: 7 March 2012

Southampton Law students learned about the responsibilities of a senior lawyer in the European Commission in a talk from Anders Jessen, who heads the Intellectual Property (IP) and Public Procurement unit in DG TRADE of the European Commission in Brussels.

He spoke about the EU's Strategy for the Protection and Enforcement of IP Rights in Third Countries, including ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, which is the Commission’s current challenge to broker in its efforts to enhance enforcement of intellectual property regulations across the world.

“Protecting intellectual property is important in industrialised countries, as it is too easy for innovations to be copied,” he says. “The EU, USA and countries such as Japan and Australia have already agreed to take action. Of course, we hope more countries will sign up to this agreement but we have made a start.”

Anders acknowledges the advent of the Internet has brought many problems for IP lawyers as IP laws in some countries have failed to keep pace with technological developments: “The advance of digital technology over the last decade or so has been so rapid, we need to keep up,” he says. He says Southampton graduates may want to consider a career dealing with these issues at public bodies such as the European Commission or within private practice.

Academic work is underway at the Southampton Law School into many of these issues. Current activity involves research into public sector information policy, open, linked and location data, traditional knowledge, information security and Internet regulation.

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