LLM in Transnational and European Commercial Law, Banking Law, Arbitration/Mediation > Intellectual Property Law (Copyright Law & Industrial Property Law) – Patents, Utility Model Certificates, Industrial Designs

Intellectual Property Law (Copyright Law & Industrial Property Law) – Patents, Utility Model Certificates, Industrial Designs

Teaching hours and credit allocation: 16 hours, 3 credits

The aim of this module is to introduce students to the legal regulation of mental products. IP rights are valuable assets for individuals and businesses. They can include inventions, processes, software, images, symbols, names, artistic works, etc. The module will examine regional and international arrangements in the field of intellectual property law, while comparisons will be made between international and national approaches. IP rights need to be protected against infringement, eventually in the courts. If properly protected, IP rights can offer a competitive advantage or considerable revenue streams through their commercial exploitation. Intellectual property is a dynamic and rapidly evolving area of law, thus the focus will be on new legal developments in the field.

Learning outcomes

On completing this module, students will:

  • Understand the importance of innovation and appreciate the incentives for creativity;
  • Understand the need not to unduly restrict the diffusion of mental products;
  • Understand the differences between the specific areas of IP law (trade secrets, trademark, copyright, industrial design, patent) and the justification for each type of right;
  • Be able to identify the areas of legal risk, as far as IP law is concerned, in operating an international business and in undertaking international transactions;
  • Explore major intellectual property statutes and international instruments, as well as international jurisprudence in the field of IP law.


  • Origins and historical development of intellectual property law;
  • International institutions concerned with intellectual property law: World Intellectual Property Organisation, WTO, EU and other regional initiatives;
  • Sources of intellectual property law: international conventions concerned with intellectual property law;
  • The TRIPS Agreements; coverage; minimum standards of protection; civil, criminal, and border enforcement; dispute settlement mechanism.
  • EU law and EPO decisions;
  • Essential features of an intellectual property regime;
  • Registration, standards for infringement, procedural and remedial advantages;
  • Foreign and international filings;
  • Preventing intellectual property infringement; confidentiality agreements;
  • IP piracy and counterfeiting; the size of the market; combating the problem;
  • The relationship between intellectual property law and other branches of law;
  • The protection of trade secrets; enforcement and remedies;
  • The protection of trademarks; enforcement and remedies;
  • The protection of copyright, with special reference to the challenges of the internet;
  • The protection of patents, with special reference to biotechnology; the issue of indigenous knowledge;
  • European Patent Convention; ancillary regulations to the EPC; Unitary patent / EU patent;
  • Attacking IP protections; the role of the medicines industry in the developing world;
  • Litigation and ADR; European Patent Litigation Agreement; evidentiary issues in IP law.