April 26: Celebrating World Intellectual Property Day

By April 26, 2006Studies and Reports

Somebody has designated today as World Intellectual Property Day and our friends at the new Creative and Innovative Economy Center (CIEC) at George Washington Law School are marking the day with a Celebration of Creativity on Capitol Hill. Members of Congress are often thought of for their creative ways, but not always in the context of understanding and supporting intellectual property laws. So hats off to the House Caucus on the Promotion of Intellectual Property and the Prevention of Piracy which is hosting this really good event with CIEC.

The April 26 program will air a new Nigerian film, “Wetin Dey?” which is means “What’s Happening?” in Nigerian slang. The film involves some piracy issues so it should be a unique way to bring attention to piracy in film-making. Moreover, it is a good way to draw attention to the larger concerns about intellectual property that affect everything from pharmaceuticals to semiconductors. Drawing attention to IP problems is important for all manufacturers, as was made clear by President Bush in his remarks during President Hu’s visit to the United States last week.

We recently met Mike Ryan, head of CIEC and he graciously agreed to participate in The Manufacturing Institute’s roundtable last week on our new IP report: Intellectual Property for the Technological Age, by Professor Richard Epstein. This report is a celebration of IP every much as important as the Nigerian film. It lays out the reasons why today’s IP regime is important to the future of the US innovation economy, despite some of the quirks in IP legal cases. For those interested in the future of manufacturing, this is a good day to celebrate and the required reading for this event is Professor Epstein’s white paper.