Modernizing Board Governance through Intellectual Property

“IP in the boadroom” is one thing, but “IP culture consistently championed by directors in and out of the boardroom” is another. So how can directors and boards create value and lower risk via IP?

For my final resarch paper for my LLM in Intelletual Property at Osgoode Hall, I researched how board governance needs to evolve given the current IP challenges in today’s business world,  what legal requirements they had to meet that aligned with both IP and Director requirements, and finally what best practices directors and boards should have.

The abstract is below, and I will post a longer business oritned writeup in the coming months. In the mean time a copy of my paper is up for peer review on SSRN or here for download. Comments are always welcome.

Abstract: This paper examines the gap between the historical prioritization of non-IP (intellectual property) issues for board of directors against both the legal requirements and market activities which suggest IP should be a key topic for boards to consider. A survey of current law and literature was conducted to identify the top IP specific governance challenges, looking at business IP transactions and patent pools as proxy to extract governance related topics. As a result, this paper provides a better understanding of the top IP related governance issues and opportunities boards and directors should consider, and recommends five best practices to enact an IP governance framework. In assembling these best practices this research has implications beyond board members and directors. Shareholders, analysts, regulators, and policy makers need to be aware and actively influencing boards to prioritizing IP assets and IP risks in their governance frameworks.


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