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The Intellectual Property Management Office and Spoor and Fisher Attorneys recently hosted a joint workshop on Intellectual Property (IP) at the Hotel School on Ritson Campus.  The presentation came after the Intellectual Property Rights from Publicly Financed Research and Development Act was passed. Under the Act, institutions are compelled to open Intellectual Property Management Offices (IPMO).

Spoor and Fisher attorney, Vishen Pillay said Intellectual Property refers to thoughts and ideas that are generated in an individual’s mind. There are four forms of IP protection; they are patents, copyrights, registered designs and trademarks. These serve as certification for the novelty of artistic and written work, designs and logos. IP inventors have to be registered with the National Intellectual Property Management Office (NIPMO).

Candidate attorney, Kerry Taylor said: “Novelty can easily be destroyed and once it’s been destroyed on any public domain, then you cannot get a patent for it. When you publicise an idea, without a patent, you lose ownership and accreditation. Anyone can then use that idea, protection is therefore crucial”.
IP Manager, Ramika Pillay said: “The purpose of IPMOs is to minimise the protection process and create alternative offices where IP inventors can register Intellectual Property. The Publicly Financed Research and Development Act creates a business platform between IP inventors in universities, institutions and industry. Government funds academics to research and develop products for industry. This is beneficial as it ultimately generates income for all parties concerned.”

Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Technology, Innovation and Partnerships, Professor Fredrick Otieno said he hopes academics will now take advantages of the workshop by generating innovative ideas.

Article by Durban University of Technology



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