LAWS90094 International IP Dispute Settlement

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2017:

September, Parkville - Taught on campus.Show/hide details
Pre-teaching Period Start 07-Aug-2017
Teaching Period 04-Sep-2017 to 08-Sep-2017
Assessment Period End 23-Oct-2017
Last date to Self-Enrol 30-Jun-2017
Census Date 04-Sep-2017
Last date to Withdraw without fail 22-Sep-2017

This subject has a quota of 30 students. Please refer to the Melbourne Law Masters website for further information about the management of subject quotas and waitlists.

Timetable can be viewed here.
For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24-26 hours
Total Time Commitment:

136-150 hours

The pre-teaching period commences four weeks before the subject commencement date. From this time, students are expected to access and review the Reading Guide that will be available from the LMS subject page and the subject materials provided by the subject coordinator, which will be available from Melbourne Law School. Refer to the Reading Guide for confirmation of which resources need to be read and what other preparation is required before the teaching period commences.

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

Applicants without legal qualifications should note that subjects are offered in the discipline of law at an advanced graduate level. While every effort will be made to meet the needs of students trained in other fields, concessions will not be made in the general level of instruction or assessment. Most subjects assume the knowledge usually acquired in a degree in law (LLB, JD or equivalent). Applicants should note that admission to some subjects in the Melbourne Law Masters will be dependent upon the individual applicant’s educational background and professional experience.

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

The Melbourne Law Masters welcomes applications from students with disabilities. The inherent academic requirements for study in the Melbourne Law Masters are:

  • The ability to attend a minimum of 75% of classes and actively engage in the analysis and critique of complex materials and debate;
  • The ability to read, analyse and comprehend complex written legal materials and complex interdisciplinary materials;
  • The ability to clearly and independently communicate in writing a knowledge and application of legal principles and interdisciplinary materials and to critically evaluate these;
  • The ability to clearly and independently communicate orally a knowledge and application of legal principles and interdisciplinary materials and critically evaluate these;
  • The ability to work independently and as a part of a group;
  • The ability to present orally and in writing legal analysis to a professional standard.

Students who feel their disability will inhibit them from meeting these inherent academic requirements are encouraged to contact Student Equity and Disability Support.



Mr Antony Taubman, Coordinator

Email: law-masters@unimelb.edu.au
Phone: +61 3 8344 6190
Website: law.unimelb.edu.au

Subject Overview:

Intellectual property (IP) – how effectively it is protected and how it is balanced with other policy domains such as public health – occupies a central, if contested, place in international trade relations. From the mid 1980s, a growing perception that inadequate or unbalanced IP protection was undercutting the economic interests of major economies made disputation about IP inevitable. The resulting tensions were a critical factor behind the inclusion of IP standards in the World Trade Organization (WTO) system of multilateral trade law, in the form of the WTO TRIPS Agreement; rather than resolving disputes over IP protection through bilateral wrangling and unilateral pressure, the rule of law would be applied in a predictable, transparent and equitable way through the multilateral dispute settlement mechanism maintained by the WTO, building on the major conventions separately administered by WIPO.

Yet recent years have seen a sharp rise in the conclusion of bilateral and regional trade and investment agreements that establish alternative or complementary sets of standards on IP and mechanisms to resolve IP disputes. The result: an intricate array of overlapping substantive standards and parallel forums for dispute settlement. This subject enables the student to navigate this complex legal landscape and to deal with its consequences from the point of view of dispute settlement practice, from the perspective of legal principle and public policy impact, and in terms of international governance and the management of trade and political relations. The lecturer offers insights from extensive experience as a senior official in both the WTO and WIPO, as an Australian official engaged in litigation and negotiation, and as a legal and policy analyst.

Principal topics include:

  • A practical anatomy of international intellectual property conventions, standards and institutions: from the creation of the major multilateral systems within WIPO and the WTO, to the current trend towards bilateral and regional deals
  • The political economy of international intellectual property: the economic, political and technological factors driving disputation over IP and the creation of competing dispute settlement mechanisms
  • The core principles of international IP law: IP principles and the idea of 'balance', the preservation of 'space’ for domestic law and policy, and the integration of trade law and public policy principles into international IP law
  • The distinctive features of international IP dispute settlement: cause of action, sources of law, remedies and challenges for treaty interpretation
  • Dispute settlement practice and emerging TRIPS jurisprudence under the WTO: a survey of TRIPS disputes and the use of TRIPS in cross retaliation, and a close analysis of landmark disputes
  • The evolving architecture of bilateral and regional trade and investment agreements covering IP: the practical implications for treaty interpretation, for the initiation, management and settlement of IP disputes in multiple fora, and for domestic law and policy
  • Compliance and monitoring of compliance: the institutional mechanisms, and the sources of information for practitioners and government officials, for legal and policy analysts and for scholars.
Learning Outcomes:

A student who has successfully completed this subject will:

  • Have acquired a thorough practical and theoretical knowledge of the structure and institutions concerned with international IP law, of international practice and procedure for settling disputes concerning IP, and of the substantive principles and core content of international IP law
  • Be familiar with the principles and distinctive aspects of treaty interpretation for IP provisions considered in an international trade law setting, and be capable of applying these principles both in a practical context, and in research and analysis
  • Have the capacity to analyse and advise upon the legal and policy implications of the evolving WTO dispute settlement jurisprudence concerning the WTO TRIPS Agreement, and to analyse and advise upon the emerging multipolar landscape of international IP and its implications for dispute settlement practice, for international trade and political relations, and for the substantive law of IP
  • Be able to reflect critically on the implications of current developments for trends in IP law and policy, for public policy choices in other domains, for the management of trade relations, and for international governance of IP at the multilateral and bilateral levels.
  • Class participation (10%)
  • 2,500 word (max) advisory report (15%) (27 September)
  • Take-home examination (5,000 - 6,000 words) (75%) (20 - 23 October)

A minimum of 75% attendance is a hurdle requirement.

Prescribed Texts:

Specialist printed materials will be made available free of charge from the Melbourne Law School prior to the pre-teaching period.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Links to further information: law.unimelb.edu.au
Related Course(s): Graduate Diploma in Dispute Resolution
Graduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Law
Graduate Diploma in International Economic Law
Graduate Diploma in Legal Studies
Master of Commercial Law
Master of Intellectual Property Law
Master of Laws

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