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FIFTEENTH CIRCUIT: Taylor Smurthwaite: Presenting on IP Trends in China


By Nicole Israel

Taylor Smurthwaite, a 3L at the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law, landed the opportunity to journey to the Far East and present at the sixth annual Chinese IP Counsel Congress. “The conference highlighted China’s prominence in intellectual property, a subject matter traditionally associated with the West,” Smurthwaite said. “One theme throughout the conference discussed the importance of where companies/individuals file patent applications and the importance of considering and almost foreseeing both the intellectual property development of the country where the patent is filed and the long-term applicability of the patent in that country.”

Smurthwaite and Jeff Lindsay, head of IP at a multinational paper company, spoke on IP trends in China and the importance of building trust between the United States and China in order to facilitate technology transfers. Smurthwaite used examples of open innovation from his internship with the Utah-Qinghai Eco-Partnership (UQEP).

They gave a presentation titled “Open Innovation and IP in China: Practical Recommendations and Lessons from New Case Studies.” “Jeff debunked a lot of myths regarding China’s intellectual property and reflected upon global trends,” said Smurthwaite. “One of the latest IP trends is the growing use of open and joint innovation through partnerships that foster collaboration and often result in greater innovation and opportunity.”

Many speakers viewed China as the future of IP because the country already maintains a well-developed legal framework, only lacking in enforcement, and the US Supreme Court’s patent case law is increasingly making the United States less attractive to both domestic and foreign businesses.

Vol. 43 No. 2

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