Professor Rebecca Giblin

  • Associate Professor Rebecca Giblin

ARC Future Fellow
Director, Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia (IPRIA)

+61 3 83447469 | | Room 0846

Research Publications SSRN Twitter The Author's Interest Project
ELending Project


Rebecca Giblin (she/her) is an ARC Future Fellow and Professor at Melbourne Law School, and the Director of the Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia. Her work sits at the intersection of law and culture, focusing on creators’ rights, access to knowledge and culture, technology regulation and copyright. Using quantitative, qualitative, doctrinal and comparative methods, she leads interdisciplinary teams with expertise across data science, cultural economics, literary sociology, information research and law to better understand how law impacts the creation and dissemination of creative works.

Giblin leads the Author’s Interest Project (ARC Future Fellowship; FT170100011) investigating how fuller protection of creators’ rights can help get them paid and simultaneously reclaim lost culture. She also heads up the e-Lending Project (ARC Linkage; LP160100387), working with an international team of legal, social and data science researchers and library partners to study the legal and social impacts of library elending. And she is director of Untapped: the Australian Literary Heritage Project, which has rescued over 160 culturally important Australian books and made them available for retail sale and for access via libraries. For more information about Untapped, see this Guardian profile of the project.

Giblin’s books include Code Wars (Edward Elgar, 2011) and What if we could reimagine copyright? (with Professor Kimberlee Weatherall). Her newest book, Chokepoint Capitalism, (with Cory Doctorow) is slated to be published by Beacon Press in September 2022.

Rebecca has held visiting scholar and visiting professor positions at Columbia Law School (2011), UC Berkeley (2013), Strasbourg (2015) and Sciences-Po Paris (2018). She is a CREATe Fellow (at the RCUK Centre for Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy) and Affiliated Faculty of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology.

Almost all of Professor Giblin’s research is available open access, including:

  1. What happens when books enter the public domain? Testing copyright’s underuse hypothesis across Australia, New Zealand, the United States and Canada’ reports the results of a quantitative study investigating how investment in ebook availability varies according to copyright status.
  2. What can 100,000 books tell us about the international public library e-lending landscape?’ analyses almost 100,000 e-books and almost 400,000 distinct licences to investigate publishers' pricing and licensing decisions across five countries, using machine learning to explore the relationships between ebook prices and their other characteristics.
  3. Are contracts enough?’ uses content analysis to analyse 60 years of author publishing agreements, with the findings demonstrating that they are not an appropriate repository of author rights.
  4. A new copyright bargain? Reclaiming lost culture and getting authors paid’ sets out a new, treaty-consistent approach to copyright that would do a better job of getting authors paid, open up new opportunities for cultural investors, and reclaim lost culture. Its follow-up, ‘A future of international copyright: Berne and the front door out’, demonstrates in more detail how the copyright treaties can be navigated to achieve meaningful, creator-protective reforms.


Melbourne Law Masters

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Director, Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia (IPRIA)
  • Australian Research Council Future Fellow
  • Affiliated Faculty, Berkeley Center for Law and Technology
  • CREATe Fellow (RCUK Centre for Copyright & New Business Models in the Creative Economy, UK)
  • Member, Editorial Board, Copyright Evidence Project
  • Member, IP Committee Law Council of Australia
  • Member, International Association for the Advancement of Teaching and Research in Intellectual Property