‘Don’t take America’s innovation leadership for granted,’ Senator Tillis Tells IP Summit Participants

America cannot be complacent about its top position in the innovation economy.

That was the key takeaway from Senator Thom Tillis introductory remarks at the 4th Intellectual Property Awareness Summit, held virtually this year on April 28th-29th. More than 500 IP owners, creators, educators, investors and advisors registered for the event.

“Republicans and Democrats must work together to insure strong protections for our creative endeavors.” The Senator, Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, who was operated on for prostate cancer earlier this month, spoke to IPAS 2021 attendees in a video recorded for the event.

IP Rights are Property

“IP protections are actual property protections. Having the right people in the right job is one part of the equation.”  Senator Tillis said that he has sent several letters to President Biden detailing the qualifications the next USPTO director and IP enforcement coordinator need to possess.

“Democrats and Republicans need to work together to enact the right policies for IP in the 21st century,” he said.

“I am committed to patent eligibility reform and an end to the abysmal state of our patent eligibility jurisprudence.” The senator, who has worked diligently to reform the DMCA and provide greater patent certainty, also said that diversity in IP is an issue that needs to be addressed. “For too long women and people of color have been underrepresented in innovation ecosystem.”

Tough Choices

He concluded: “America can and will remain the leading innovation economy in the 21st century. But to do so Congress will be required to make the tough and necessary policy choices. If we rise to the challenge we can be sure that American intellectual property will continue to change lives for the better.”

The theme of IPAS 2021 is ‘IP and the lives it touches.’ The event was hosted by the Center for Intellectual Property Understanding (CIPU) with the support this year from the Kellogg School of Management, Center for Research in Technology and Innovation. This year’s event featured four panels and 18 speakers.

A video of Senator Tillis’ remarks can be found here.

Image source: USAToday; CIPU

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