2009

     The John Marshall Law School in Chicago successfully concluded its first China Summer Program in Intellectual Property (IP) Law in July. The program was offered in Beijing in conjunction with Peking University. The program presented three courses during a four week session at the Peking University campus. Students in the program were able to complete courses covering comparative Chinese and United States IP issues, IP in international business organizations, and an IP survey. Courses were taught by faculty from John Marshall and Peking University. Peking University, regarded by some as the “Harvard of China”, is renowned for both its educational excellence and its beauty of the campus. The campus grounds retain elements of the gardens of a Chinese royal family home previously located on the same site.      
Students in the China IP Summer Program were able to attend an unusual comparative IP litigation program offered jointly by John Marshall, Peking University, and the Chinese State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO). Using a single set of trademark dispute facts, participants in the program demonstrated how the dispute would be litigated in a Chinese court in the first half of the day-long program and in a United State court in second half. The United States portion of this program was overseen by United States District Court Judge David H. Coar of the Northern District of Illinois, assisted by Gustavo Siller, Jr., and Michael P. Chu of the Chicago law firm of Brinks, Hofer, Gilson & Lione, who acted as opposing counsel. The Chinese portion of this program was overseen by Professor Guangliang Zhang, former Acting Chief Judge of the Intellectual Property Tribunal, Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court and a graduate of John Marshall’s IP LL.M. program. The comparative litigation program highlighted many of the substantive and procedural differences in litigation within the two systems and was well received by the numerous Chinese judges, government officials and members of the Beijing IP bar in attendance.      
The China IP Summer Program also provided students with chances to visit with leaders of the Chinese IP community. The students’ visit to SIPO was hosted by GuoLiang Lu, Director-General of the International Cooperation Division of SIPO and another graduate of John Marshall’s LL.M. program. They received a briefing by a patent examiner on his work as well as several presentations on developments in Chinese IP laws. Students also visited the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, where they met with researchers who propose and review revisions to Chinese IP laws at the request of the government. Students in the summer program met with Judge Coar and Chinese Judge Dongtao Li of the People’s Court of Hai Dian District, Beijing, China (another John Marshall IP LL.M. alumnus) for a session on comparative judicial challenges in overseeing IP cases. This session was shared with IP students from Peking University, which gave the United States and Chinese students a chance to share their views on the future of IP in their countries. A further visit to the Liu, Shen and Associates law firm included presentations by Jay Sha and Allen Tao, partners in the firm who handle a wide variety of IP matters for international clients. Sha and Tao are also graduates of John Marshall. Later the same evening, the Liu, Shen law firm hosted a dinner for the summer program students and Chinese alumni of John Marshall’s IP program in Chicago. Approximately 70 alumni attended, including several judges, SIPO officials, and leading IP attorneys.      
The educational visits in the program were complemented by several cultural tours. During the four week program, organized tours took students to the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace.      
John Marshall’s ABA-approved China IP Summer Program was open to students from law schools around the country. John Marshall expects to offer a similar program available to United States law students each summer, with courses in intellectual property and international business law. Download here for a copy of the summer program brochure.