Leading academic, business and government experts discussed how California’s stem cell initiative could ensure that California provides the leading model for other jurisdictions engaged in stem cell research at a three-day conference at Boalt Hall on March 2-4. The conference was devoted to examining the legal and policy questions facing California in the wake of Proposition 71, which allocated $3 billion to human embryonic stem cell research over the next 10 years.
More than 200 people gathered for panel discussions on topics including intellectual property rights for materials generated by stem cell research, recouping California’s investment, the political process, and the protection of egg donors. Participants agreed there was a need to ensure as much public access as possible to intellectual property produced as part of the state-backed research, particularly with respect to non-patentable material such as databases and scientific findings and articles.
The conference was organized to address evolving issues and newly proposed regulations that will govern intellectual property and ethics associated with human embryonic stem cell research in California. The program reflected the multidisciplinary nature of its sponsors including the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology; Berkeley Center for Law and Business; Berkeley Technology Law Journal; and Travers Program on Ethics and Government Accountability.