2021 Events


China Stakes Out Its Place in Plant Variety Protection: An Update with Experts on PVP and Agricultural IP Developments in China

October 13, 2021
5:00 – 6:30 P.M. (PT)
Virtual Event
Event recording

Since China established its legal regime for the protection of new varieties of plants in 1997, it has emerged as the country with the largest number of plant variety applications in the world, as well as the most litigious. 

China’s current plant variety regime focuses on policy and legislative initiatives, including work on a new Seed Law by the National People’s Congress. Its plant variety protection enforcement efforts also reflect many of the reforms already undertaken in other areas of IP law, including: providing for punitive damages, burden of proof reversals and exceptions and limitations to infringement. Yet, China has yet to accede to UPOV ’91, the latest version of the WIPO treaty to protect plant varieties. 

To what extent does China’s plant variety IP regime address China’s twin goals of becoming an agricultural innovator and meeting the food security needs of its vast population?

We will explore the public policy implications of China’s efforts to become a major force in new plant varieties, the technical aspects of China’s emerging plant variety regime, and how these changes fit into China’s overall IP practice.

Book Talk: Intellectual Property Law in China, 2nd Ed.

Thursday, September 23, 2021
5:00 P.M. PT

Whether you are a fan or a critic, the rapid evolution of China’s IP system during the past forty years has had dramatic consequences for world trade, innovation and the global IP system. 

Mark Cohen of Berkeley Law, Peter Yu of Texas A&M, Li Yahong of University of Hong Kong and Daryl Lim of University of Illinois Chicago will discuss these important changes with the contributors to the second edition of a leading treatise on Chinese IP law:

Doug Clark, Global Head of Dispute Resolution, Rouse
Danny Friedmann, Peking University School of Transnational Law
Peter Ganea, Law School of Tongji University
Jyh-An Lee, Chinese University of Hong Kong

China: A Patent Linkage Update

Thursday, July 15, 2021
5:00-6:30 P.M. (PDT)

China committed to a patent linkage (Hatch-Waxman) regime linking pharmaceutical regulatory approval and patent infringement determinations in the Phase 1 Trade Agreement concluded with the United States in January 2020. The linkage regime is part of a series of pharmaceutical IP related reforms set forth in that Agreement.

With the enactment of China’s revised patent law, as well as the adoption of new rules on patent linkage on July 4, 2021 and a new Judicial Interpretation on July 5, 2021, the basic legislative framework for China’s new patent linkage regime is now in place. But how will these new rules work in practice?

Scraping Takeaways from Van Buren v. United States

Tuesday, June 15th
11:00 a.m. PT / 2:00 p.m. ET
(via Zoom 45 Minutes)

As a follow-up to our May 2021 virtual digital conference, we bring you hot takes on Van Buren v. United States, in which the Supreme Court held that the Computer Fraud & Abuse Act’s prohibition on “exceeding authorized access” to a computer is not triggered by exploiting granted access for unauthorized purposes. We will explore the implications of the ruling for websites’ efforts to prohibit scraping, data journalism, and other issues.  Featuring Orin Kerr, Professor of Law, UC Berkeley in conversation with Marc Zwillinger, Founder & Managing Member, ZwillGen.

Legal Frontiers in Digital Media

Co-organized with Media Law Resource Center

May 18-20, 2021

BCLT and the Media Law Resource Center are proud to present the next in this series of conferences that explores emerging legal issues surrounding digital content in today’s multi-platform world.  This year’s conference co-chairs are Lauriebeth Bugawan, Pandora, Ashley Kissinger, Ballard Spahr, and Kandi Parsons, ZwillGen.

More information

Thursday, May 13
4:30 P.M. Pacific

Angela Huyue Zhang from the faculty of Law of the University of Hong Kong will discuss her new book on Chinese Antitrust Exceptionalism. This book talk will focus on technology and IP in China’s antitrust regime. Prof. Zhang will be joined by Professors Rob Merges, Hao Yuan and Mark Cohen from Berkeley Law.

The event is free and open to the public. It is part of our spring/summer series on Chinese technology and IP issues.

Quantum Leap: Developments in China IP Law Over the Past Two Years

May 6, 2021
Pacific Time: Thursday, May 6th, 2021, 4:30 P.M.–6:00 P.M. 
China Time: Friday, May 7, 2021, 7:30 A.M.–9:00 A.M. 

If you had one hour to spend to understand how China’s IP regime is changing, this is the program to attend. We will provide a synopsis of the major developments in patents, trademarks, copyright, trade secrets, IP and antitrust, criminal IP reform, and litigation. The program will serve as a great introduction to a four part series on IP law developments in China, which this year will focus on litigation.

Tech, Trade and China 2021

Tuesday, April 27
8:45 A.M. – 3:00 P.M. (PT)




Should the U.S. cooperate or confront China on tech issues? Can the U.S. work with its allies to advance areas of common interests with respect to China? What role should unilateral trade measures, including export controls or tariff sanctions, play in our approach to China? How can China and the U.S. work together to address global challenges such as pandemics and climate change? The Berkeley Center for Law & Technology’s third annual Tech, Trade and China conference consisted of three sessions:

  • The Role of the WTO and Trade Agreements in Technology and IP
  • Export Controls and Technology Collaboration
  • Common Challenges – Climate Change and Public Health

Google v. Oracle: An Initial Appraisal

April 20, 2021
1:00 –2:00 P.M. (PT)


Event Recording

On April 5, the Supreme Court handed down its much-anticipated decision in one of the most consequential copyright cases of our time, Google v. Oracle. In ruling that fair use permitted Google to incorporate elements of the Java API into its software for the Android phone, the Court clarified standards not only for fair use as applied to software but also arguably for other copyrighted works as well.

Our assessment of this momentous decision will be led by Profs. Peter Menell and Pamela Samuelson. In addition to filing amicus briefs in the case, they have written extensively about it and the broader issues of software copyright. They will be joined by Supreme Court advocate Tom Goldstein, who argued the case for Google, and by Prof. Sean O’Connor of the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University.

This event is free. CA MCLE credit will be provided.

April 15-16, 2021


In digital networked environments, laws and regulations are not the only source of rulemaking. Technical standards, the configuration of software, the architecture of hardware, and industry articulations of best practices also affect how information flows are permitted or forbidden. Joel Reidenberg’s prescient article, Lex Informatica: The Formulation of Information Policy Rules Through Technology, published in the Texas Law Review in 1998, urged policymakers to understand, consciously recognize, and encourage the evolution of these extra-legal influences to achieve optimal public policy outcomes. This symposium will honor the legacy of Reidenberg’s deep insights about Lex Informatica as policy levers and will explore respects in which Lex Informatica is working in the public interest and ways in which technology regulations could be improved.

Oral Advocacy at its Finest: Circuit Judge Kimberly Moore and District Court Judge Alan Albright Discuss What Works (and Doesn’t)

Co-organized with Winston & Strawn

April 5, 2021

Whether you are an associate or a junior lawyer looking for insights into what is most helpful to judges or tips on the best ways to advance your positions and win for your clients, Federal Circuit Judge Kimberly Moore and District Court Judge Alan Albright will share their views. Both judges had illustrious careers before joining the bench: Judge Moore as an engineer, advocate, and well-known, prolific professor and Judge Albright as a magistrate judge, trial lawyer, and advocate. The judges went out of their way to mentor and guided junior advocates and came together to share their views. The panel was moderated by Winston & Strawn Silicon Valley Managing Partner and district court and Federal Circuit advocate Kathi Vidal.

Symposium: 25th Anniversary of the Telecommunications Act of 1996—Looking Ahead to the Next Telecommunications Act

March 12, 2021

To mark the 25th anniversary of the 1996 Telecommunications Act, this symposium explored possible facets of the next major telecommunications reform effort (whenever it may be), including technological convergence and regulatory power; race and diversity in communications law; institutional design and the Federal Communications Commission; and federalism and state power.

Co-sponsored with the Federal Communications Law Journal and hosted at The George Washington University Law School

Cyber-hate: Defining and Combating Antisemitism & Hate Online

This symposium explored the phenomenon of cyber-hate. What are the key issues and manifestations? What are the appropriate responses to online hate? What are the frameworks available— legal, social, technological — and possible constraints to responding? How do we evaluate the success of various solutions?

Session 1 — February 4, 2021: Translating Hate in the Digital World

Session 2 — March 4, 2021: Combating Online Hate: Law, Technology, and Society

Co-sponsored by the Berkeley Institute’s Program on Jewish Law, Thought, and Identity and the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology

February 19, 2021 


A recording of this event is available here

This Symposium explored the history of design patent protection and the evolution of the key ornamentality/non-functionality doctrine. The lead paper, Design Patent Law’s Identity Crisis authored by Professor Peter Menell and Ella Corren, framed the Symposium. Panels comprised of academic and practitioner commentators discussed the past, present, and future of design protection.

3.75 total hours of CLE credit offered.

3rd Berkeley-Tsinghua Conference on Transnational IP Litigation

January 21 – 29, 2021 


A recording of this event is available here

Full series (4 sessions): $250.00
Single day: $75.00
Asia IP sponsors, academics, non-profit, government and students: complimentary

A distinguished group of judges, officials, practitioners and academics from the United States and China discussed issues such as SEP’s, trade secrets, patent linkage for pharmaceuticals, on-line enforcement, and trans-border legal ethics.