Gowers Review of Intellectual Property

At the Enterprise Conference on 2 December 2005, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that, as part of the Pre-Budget Report 2005 package, he was asking Andrew Gowers to lead an Independent Review to examine the UK's intellectual property framework.

The Open Rights Group has been formally invited to participate. We are currently drafting our submission and wish to include your thoughts and opinions. We have reproduced the Call for Evidence below and invite you to contribute - just hit 'respond' next to the paragraph you wish to comment on.

Many of the questions asked by Andrew Gowers in this review are very focused, but you should feel free to comment on the issues and the wider implications rather than feel obliged to provide specific answers. If you want to talk about issues not raised by this call for evidence, please do - just leave your comments on the Introduction.

this site was built by
Open Rights Group
based on a template by

Scope of the Review

The Review will examine all elements of the IP system, to ensure that it delivers incentives while minimising inefficiency. Specifically:

  1. The way in which Government administers the awarding of IP and provides support to consumers and business. The award and observance of IP should be predictable, and transparent, with minimal information costs and transaction costs for firms and citizens.
  2. The way in which businesses and other organisations use IP. The structure of the IP framework should reflect the impact of economic and technological change on the nature of intellectual assets and their importance to businesses across different sectors.
  3. How well businesses, other organisations and individuals are able to exchange and trade IP — in particular negotiating the complexity and expense of the copyright and patent systems, including copyright and patent licensing arrangements. Exchange of IP should be facilitated by accurate valuation, with no barriers in access to finance, and liquid markets.
  4. How well businesses and others are able to challenge and enforce IP. Litigation and enforcement should be swift, efficient and judicious with the optimal mix of technical and legal measures. Businesses should be aware of the range of alternative methods to challenge and enforce IP such as mediation and alternative dispute resolution. These methods should be relatively inexpensive, swift, efficient and transparent.

Link to this section

One response

  1. David Mytton Says:

    “the awarding of IP and provides support to consumers and business” – perhaps some kind of extra accountability for the Patent Office so that it obeys the law unlike the EPO. The PO has a monopoly on what it grants without any real review of its actions.