Calboli Co-Organizes IP Researchers Europe Conference

September 27, 2018

Calboli-IPRE-OMPI1487Texas A&M School of Law Professor Irene Calboli at the IP Researchers Europe (IPRE) Conference. (Photo: WIPO/Berrod)

Texas A&M University School of Law Professor Irene Calboli was an organizer for the first IP Researchers Europe (IPRE) Conference, held in Geneva, Switzerland, this summer. The conference was organized by the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), and the School of Law of the University of Geneva (UNIGE).

The IPRE promotes scholarly exchange to “facilitate dialogue and engagement between scholars and policy makers and other IP experts” from around the world in addition to providing an interactive forum for IP researchers to present works-in-progress.

Calboli was a panelist for the opening keynote presentation by WIPO Director General Francis Gurry and the closing keynote presentation given by WTO Director General Roberto Azevêdo. Calboli also chaired and moderated the Trademarks, Design, and Injunctions session. Additionally, Calboli provided the opening and closing remarks for the conference, along with her fellow IPRE scientific coordinators. (See the WIPO news article below).

Calboli-WTO-DG-WIPO8536Professor Irene Calboli (on right) on the IPRE keynote panel led by World Trade Organization Director General Roberto Azevêdo. (Photo: WIPO/Berrod)

The ​inaugural IPRE coincided with the 2018 WIPO-WTO Colloquium for IP Teachers and the 2018 WIPO-UNIGE Intellectual Property Summer School, where Calboli served as a WIPO Academy expert, delivering lectures on geographic indications, IP teaching methodologies, international trademark protection, IP rights, and non-traditional trademarks.

Calboli’s work, leadership and expertise extends around the globe. She is also a scientific organizer of the upcoming first IP & Innovation Researchers of Asia Conference to be held in Kuala Lumpur in January and February, 2019. The conference is organized by the Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws, International Islamic University Malaysia, where Calboli is a visiting professor, in collaboration with the WIPO Academy, WIPO, WTO, UNIGE, and Texas A&M University School of Law.

Calboli also launched and organized the "IP Scholars Asia" Conference in Singapore in 2016, 2017, and 2018, with the support of the WIPO Academy at the School of Law, Singapore Management University, where she was a visiting professor until May 2018.

About Professor Irene Calboli

Irene-calboli-720x500Irene Calboli is Professor of Law at Texas A&M University School of Law and Fellow at the Transatlantic Technology Law Forum at Stanford Law School. She has been a visiting professor and scholar in academic institutions world-wide, including the National University of Singapore, the Royal University of Law and Economics in Cambodia, Bocconi University, Hanken School of Economics, King’s College London, the University of Strasburg, the University of California at Berkeley, Tongji University, the University of Queensland, and the Max-Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition. Most recently, she was Visiting Professor, Lee Kong Chian Fellow, and the Founding Deputy Director of the Applied Research Centre for Intellectual Assets and the Law in Asia, a Centre that she headed from 2015 until 2017, at Singapore Management University School of Law.

Irene is a prolific scholar and the author and editor of several books, articles, and book chapters. Her current publications focus on overlapping intellectual property protection, trademarks and geographical indications of origin, and the intersection between intellectual property and international trade. Irene regularly acts as Expert for national governments and international organizations, and has recently conducted missions in Cambodia, China, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Malaysia, South Africa, Thailand, and Vietnam.

An elected member of the American Law Institute and associate member of the Singapore Academy of Law, she currently serves as member of the Council of the International Law Association (Singapore Branch), Chair of the Art Law Section of the Association of American Law Schools, and member of the Legislation and Regulation Committee of the International Trademark Association. Irene is the recipient of numerous awards, including as Fulbright Specialist for 2017-2020.

Article originally published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Republished with permission.

First IP Researchers Europe Conference at WIPO

June 29, 2018

WIPO, the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the University of Geneva (UNIGE) launched the first IP Researchers Europe Conference (IPRE) at WIPO on Friday, June 29. WIPO Director General Francis Gurry gave the first keynote speech of the event on the global IP system. The IPRE Conference was organized jointly by WIPO, WTO and UNIGE, and coincided with the 15th edition of the annual WIPO-WTO Colloquium for Intellectual Property (IP) Teachers and the eighth edition of the WIPO-University of Geneva Summer School.

WIPO Director General Francis Gurry (Photo: WIPO/Berrod)

In his keynote speech, the Director General of WIPO highlighted:

  • the evolution of IP policy in the modern era and at the international level;
  • the rise of technological advancements such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and knowledge intensive industries;
  • issues regarding data protection and ownership; and
  • international cooperation beyond treaties.
WTO Director General Roberto Azevêdo. Professor Calboli is on the right. (Photo: WIPO/Berrod)

A closing keynote speech was given by the Director General of WTO, Mr. Roberto Azevêdo, which focused on:

  • the linkages between IP, trade and public policy;
  • the TRIPS public health amendment and its implementation;
  • the role of the IP system in helping to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals; and
  • the vital role of researchers in illuminating the IP law and policy landscape.

Close to 200 IP experts, professors and students took part in the conference.

Photo: WIPO/Berrod

The IPRE Conference was opened and closed by Mr. Antony Taubman, Director of the Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division at WTO, Mr. Sherif Saadallah, Executive Director of the WIPO Academy, Professor Jacques de Werra, the Vice Rector of UNIGE, and Professor Irene Calboli, Texas A&M University School of Law.

IPRE scientific coordinators (left to right): Antony Taubman (Director of the Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division, WTO), Professor Jacques de Werra (Vice Rector, UNIGE), Professor Irene Calboli (Texas A&M University School of Law) and Mr. Sherif Saadallah (Executive Director, WIPO Academy).
(Photo: WIPO/Berrod)


The IPRE aims to promote research and dialogue on IP, and to give researchers an opportunity to discuss their works-in-progress with fellow IP experts. It follows on from the success of WIPO’s support to similar events in Asia and Africa: the IP Scholars Asia Conference, which has been held in recent years at Singapore Management University, and the IP Researchers Africa Conference, which was held this year for the first time in cooperation with the University of South Africa. Next year similar regional events will be held for Latin America in partnership with San Andres University, Argentina, and for Asia in partnership with the International Islamic University of Malaysia.  

Given the long-standing relationship that both WIPO and the WTO enjoy with the University of Geneva, and the unique role that Geneva has as the host city for the international IP community, it was natural that the IPRE would be organized in partnership with these institutions and hosted at WIPO.  The focus of the IPRE is European-based research of international interest, which complements the annual WIPO-WTO Colloquium’s activities.

The WIPO-WTO Colloquium builds IP capacity for teachers by providing updates on the current developments and ongoing debates in IP across WIPO and the WTO. Participants of the Colloquium benefitted from the IPRE by getting an overview of the research in the field of IP in Europe and joining a research community to share perspectives regarding IP teaching.