Friday 4 September 2015

EPIP goes to Glasgow

This Blogger was very pleased to attend (part of) this week's conference of EPIP - the European Policy for Intellectual Property Association (an organisation which deserves to be better known outside of academic circles), hosted by University of Glasgow and, in particular, by CREATe, the RCUK Centre for Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy.

The University has strong links to Glasgow's creative renaissance, which were reflected upon in the Conference's opening remarks from the Vice-Chancellor.  This was followed by a keynote from Ian Hargreaves reflecting on his Report and its legacy, to which Julia Reda gave a thoughtful response, cautioning against "policy-based evidence making" in IP, as opposed to the more conventional "evidence-based policy making".

The tensions between policy development and evidence were very much in evidence throughout the event - both in plenary sessions and in some of the parallel panel sessions I attended (and in one instance, chaired).  You can read the full programme and abstracts of all of the papers here.  More about CREATe here and more about the event here and EPIP should be here [although the link seems to be down at present].

Also worth mentioning is the launch of the CREATe Copyright Evidence Wiki - bookmark that page for a reference point at which to start looking for academic papers exploring particular aspects of copyright.

Overall, I found the event a fascinating insight into a part of the copyright (and broader IP) world with which I rarely interface.  Other attendees also described the event as fascinating, stimulating

What was notable to this author, one of few present from outside of academia and policy-making (nods to the smattering of others, including Spotify, Microsoft, the BFI and PRS) is how much more needs to be done to bring together those undertaking the large volumes of research into copyright (and other IP) topics with actual policy-makers and, especially, with the world of those who make a living directly or indirectly from the copyright-related industries.   This was a theme which, it appears, was echoed in Professor Pamela Samuelson's closing speech (judging only from tweets and other indirect reports - I was back in London working for clients by then!), where she also observed the surprisingly limited amount of debate around the DSM issues (the notable exceptions being an insightful paper from Giuseppe Mazziotti of Trinity College, Dublin, delivered without slides following a technical glitch; and a piece of empirical research on iTunes and geographical availability of content which, while interesting, appeared to raise as many questions as it answered.

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