Francis Gurry Lecture on Intellectual Property – 16.10.19

Professor Emeritus Sam Ricketson delivered the 2019 Francis Gurry Lecture on Intellectual Property on 16 October, speaking on the topic, "IP Law Reforms in Australia: a mixed story of successes and failures"


This event was presented in conjunction with the Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia (IPTA), and generously supported by IP Australia, AIPPI, IPSANZ and LESANZ.

Event synopsis

Australia’s intellectual property laws have proliferated since federation, when responsibility for them was placed in the new Commonwealth Parliament. Many of these have been imported from abroad, in particular the United Kingdom, or have been adopted as a consequence of our international engagements.

Increasingly, however, our IP law and policy-making has assumed a distinctly Australian character, and our IP laws have moved towards the centre of national innovation and development policy. The history of IP law reform has been a mixed one, with both highs and lows, but there is now much greater awareness of the need for well-functioning and effective IP laws.

In this lecture, Sam Ricketson will review our past successes and failures in IP law reform, and will consider what are the lessons for the future.

About the presenter

For more than 40 years, Sam Ricketson has been engaged in teaching, researching, practising and reforming IP law. As the author of the authoritative historical analyses of the Berne Convention and the Paris Convention, and other major academic works, he is a pre-eminent figure in the IP community, both nationally and internationally.

In addition to holding academic positions at the University of Melbourne, the University of London and Monash University, Sam has engaged in legal practice as a barrister as well as serving as a member of the Commonwealth Copyright Tribunal. He has contributed to law reform as a consultant to the Australian Law Reform Commission and as a member of the Law Council of Australia and the Victorian Law Reform Commission.

Following his recent retirement from Melbourne Law School, Sam was appointed a Professor Emeritus by the University of Melbourne.