All posts by Kathy


‘Copyright and Cartography. History, Law, and the Circulation of Geographical Knowledge’

Isabella Alexander (UTS) in Conversation with Will Slauter (Sorbonne) & Kathy Bowrey (UNSW). Chaired by Jose Bellido (Kent)

12 Oct 2023

BST 16:00; CET 17:00; EDT 11:00: PDT 8:00; AEST 13th Sept 2:00am

This open access book explores the intertwined histories of mapmaking and copyright law in Britain from the early modern period up to World War 1, focusing chiefly on the 18th and 19th centuries. Taking a multidisciplinary approach and making extensive use of the archival record, this is the first detailed, historical account of the relationship between maps and copyright. As such, it examines how the emergence and development of copyright law affected mapmakers and the map trade and how the application of copyright law to the field of mapmaking affected the development of copyright doctrine. Its explorations cast new light on the circulation of geographical knowledge, different cultures of authorship and creativity, and connections between copyright law, print culture, technology, and society.

The book’s investigations end in the first decades of the 20th century, but the tensions it identifies persist in the 21st century, although today paper maps have been largely replaced by web-based mapping platforms and digital geospatial data.

Isabella Alexander, a Professor in the Faculty of Law at UTS, is a legal historian and intellectual property scholar, whose research explores how laws inform and regulate the creation, circulation and reception of knowledge and culture from an historical perspective. She researches and teaches in intellectual property law and legal history, specialising in the law of copyright.

Will Slauter is Professor of American history and civilization, Sorbonne University. His research interests include the history of publishing, the history of news and journalism, and the history of copyright law in the United Kingdom and the United States. He is the author of Who Owns the News? A History of Copyright (Stanford University Press 2019).

Kathy Bowrey is a Professor in the School of Law, Society and Criminology, Faculty of Law & Justice, University of New South Wales. Her most recent books are Jose Bellido & Kathy Bowrey, Adventures in Childhood. Intellectual Property, Imagination and the Business of Play (Cambridge University Press, 2022) and Copyright, Creativity, Big Media & Cultural Value (Routledge, 2021)

ZOOM link for registration:

Intellectual Property, Past and Present: An Interdisciplinary Conversation

22 September 2023

Hosted by HDEA (Histoire et dynamique des espaces anglophones), Sorbonne Université, ISHTIP is supporting a great forthcoming book discussion, organised by Will Slauter:

« Intellectual Property, Past and Present: An Interdisciplinary Conversation », 22 September 2023, 14:00-17:00 Central European Time, Sorbonne Université and on Zoom (hybrid event, in English)

Featuring a discussion of two recent books :

•       Jessica Silbey, Professor of Law, Boston University, author of Against Progress: Intellectual Property and Fundamental Values in the Internet Age (Stanford University Press, 2022), with comments by Séverine Dusollier, Professor of Law, Sciences Po Paris

•       Gabriel Galvez-Behar, Professor of History, Université de Lille, author of Histoire de la propriété intellectuelle (La Découverte, 2022), with comments by Will Slauter, Professor of English studies, Sorbonne Université

The seminar will take place in the Bibliothèque d’UFR d’Études anglophones, Sorbonne Université, 17 rue de la Sorbonne 75005 Paris. 

To attend by Zoom, please register here:

To attend in person please contact in advance of the event as access to the building may require an invitation. 

Event organized by the research center HDEA (Histoire et dynamique des espaces anglophones), Sorbonne Université, with the support of ISHTIP (International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property). 

For more information please contact Will Slauter,  


Tel Aviv University, 20-23 June 2023

Conference Program below

Register to attend here:

CFP: IP and Migration

Tel Aviv University’s Faculty of Law (TAU Law) is delighted to host the 14th Annual Conference of the International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property (ISHTIP.

This year’s conference theme is IP and Migration – of people, information, technology, creativity and law; as always, we are happy to consider other submissions within ISTHIP’s core themes. We aim at scholars from all disciplines – law, cultural studies, sociology, media studies, economics, history, philosophy and anyone who studies IP.

The conference is hosted by the S. Horowitz Institute for IP, and the David Berg Institute for Law and History, both at TAU Law.

Download the Call for Papers here

Please distribute widely to anyone who may be interested, research students included.

June 19, 2023 – reception

ISTHIP @ TAU:  June 20-21, 2023


As in previous ISHTIP conferences, each participant bears their own travel, accommodation and related costs (we will suggest hotels in due course); there is no registration fee.

Best wishes,

Michael Birnhack, Niva Elkin-Koren (organizers)

CFP: Patent Futures. A History

“Patent Futures: A History,” is the fourth and final workshop of the ERC-funded project “Patents as Scientific Information, 1895-2020,” ( in collaboration with The International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property (ISHTIP

Call For Papers: Patent Futures. A History

Dates: April 26-28, 2023.

Venue: Mundaneum, Mons, Belgium.

Call closes: November 15, 2022.

Proposal format: 500 Word proposal/200 Word bio.

Submit to:

Co-founded by the two Belgian lawyers Paul Otlet (1868-1944) and Henri LaFontaine (1854-1943), Mundaneum, has played a crucial role for PASSIM, both in terms of its structure and design, but also because it was here the project was first conceived. As PASSIM draws to a close, we return to “the scene of the crime” for a workshop on the past, present, and future of patents.
Patents tend to be associated with progress, modernity, and future usefulness. At the same time, we know that they are profoundly contextual, situated in specific historical eras and traditions. Time and various temporalities therefore occupy crucial points of departure when researching the history of patents.
We now invite Ph.D. candidates or recent Ph.D.’s (degree awarded no earlier than during 2022) to submit proposals on topics that include but are not limited to: questions of memory and regimes of remembrance in the patent system; legal temporality in general, especially in relation to the construction of value and capital; efficiency and speed as elements of bureaucratic time inside the Patent Office. In line with Otlet and LaFontaine’s Mundaneum legacy and their visionary work on knowledge circulation, we also invite contributions that focus on the visualization of patents and knowledge in general. Finally, we encourage submissions that consider the various formats and temporalities of patent records and/or engage critically with the archives and sources of interdisciplinary patent scholarship.
PASSIM will cover the travel and accommodation cost of the selected participants.
Come and meet the entire PASSIM team and our special invitees: David Pretel, Assistant Professor of History and Economic Institutions, Autonomous University of Madrid; Katarina Nordqvist, Associate Professor and Head of Section, Swedish Ministry of Education and Research.
Follow us on @passimproject as we announce more invited commentators!

Any questions can be directed to the organizers of the workshop:
Jesper Alkarp
Isabelle Strömstedt
Johan Larson Lindal



23 May 2022 BST 11am; CET 12pm; EST 6am: PST 3am; AEST 8pm

‘Paris to New York: The Transatlantic Fashion Industry in the Twentieth Century’

Véronique Pouillard (Oslo) in conversation with Stina Teilman-Lock (CBS) and Johanna Gibson (QMUL).

Chaired by ISHTIP Co-Director, Kathy Bowrey (UNSW).

Fashion is one of the most dynamic industries in the world, with an annual retail value of $3 trillion and globally recognized icons like Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, and Yves Saint Laurent. How did this industry generate such economic and symbolic capital?

Focusing on the roles of entrepreneurs, designers, and institutions in fashion’s two most important twentieth-century centers, Paris to New York tells the history of the industry as a negotiation between art and commerce. In the late nineteenth century, Paris-based firms set the tone for a global fashion culture nurtured by artistic visionaries. In the burgeoning New York industry, however, the focus was on mass production. American buyers, trend scouts, and designers crossed the Atlantic to attend couture openings, where they were inspired by, and often accused of counterfeiting, designs made in Paris. For their part, Paris couturiers traveled to New York to understand what American consumers wanted and to make deals with local manufacturers for whom they designed exclusive garments and accessories. The cooperation and competition between the two continents transformed the fashion industry in the early and mid-twentieth century, producing a hybrid of art and commodity.

Véronique Pouillard shows how the Paris–New York connection gave way in the 1960s to a network of widely distributed design and manufacturing centers. Since then, fashion has diversified. Tastes are no longer set by elites alone, but come from the street and from countercultures, and the business of fashion has transformed into a global enterprise.

Véronique Pouillard is Professor of International History at the University of Oslo and Principal Investigator, ERC CoG 818523, CREATIVE IPR – The History of Intellectual Property Rights in the Creative Industries, 2018.

Stina Teilmann-Lock is Associate Professor at the  Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy, Copenhagen Business School.

Johanna Gibson is Herchel Smith Professor of Intellectual Property Law and Deputy Director of the Queen Mary Intellectual Property Research Institute at the Centre for Commercial Law Studies (CCLS), School of Law, Queen Mary, University of London.

‘Performing Copyright’ : Luke McDonagh (LSE) in conversation with Jane Wessel (USNA) & Kathy Bowrey (UNSW)

27 April 2022 BST 1pm; CET 2pm; EST 8 am; PST 5am; AEST 10pm

Performing Copyright. Law, Theatre and Authorship.

Luke M. McDonagh (LSE) in conversation with Jane Wessel (USDA) and Kathy Bowrey (UNSW).

Chaired by ISHTIP Co-Director, Eva Hemmungs Wirtén, (Linköping University) .

Based on empirical research, this innovative book explores issues of performativity and authorship in the theatre world under copyright law and addresses several inter-connected questions: who is the author and first owner of a dramatic work? Who gets the credit and the licensing rights? What rights do the performers of the work have? Given the nature of theatre as a medium reliant on the re-use of prior existing works, tropes, themes and plots, what happens if an allegation of copyright infringement is made against a playwright? Furthermore, who possesses moral rights over the work?

To evaluate these questions in the context of theatre, the first part of the book examines the history of the dramatic work both as text and as performative work. The second part explores the notions of authorship and joint authorship under copyright law as they apply to the actual process of creating plays, referring to legal and theatrical literature, as well as empirical research. The third part looks at the notion of copyright infringement in the context of theatre, noting that cases of alleged theatrical infringement reach the courts comparatively rarely in comparison with music cases, and assessing the reasons for this with respect to empirical research. The fourth part examines the way moral rights of attribution and integrity work in the context of theatre. The book concludes with a prescriptive comment on how law should respond to the challenges provided by the theatrical context, and how theatre should respond to law.

Luke McDonagh is Assistant Professor at the Law Department at the London School of Economics (LSE) where he undertakes research in the areas of Intellectual Property Law and Constitutional Law. His new book Performing Copyright. Law. Theatre and Copyright is published by Bloomsbury Press, 2021.

Jane Wessel is Assistant Professor of English at the US Naval Academy. Her forthcoming book is Owning Performance | Performing Ownership. Literary Property and the Eighteenth-Century British Stage (Michigan University Press, 2022).

Kathy Bowrey is a Professor in the School of Law, Society and Criminology, Faculty of Law and Justice, University of New South Wales, Australia and ISHTIP Co-Director.

CFP: Patents in the service of War And Peace

We invite contributions to the 3rd workshop of the ERC-funded project PASSIM (Patents as Scientific Information, 1895–2020), in collaboration with The International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property (ISHTIP).

Deadline is soon: October 30, 2021

Dates: May 16–18, 2022
Venue: Norrköping, Sweden
Call closes: October 30, 2021
Proposal format: 500 Word proposal/200 Word bio
Submit to:

Although legal historians and humanities scholars have studied patent law and its histories beyond their economic effects, it is surprising that they have devoted less attention to their military entanglements. The workshop welcomes papers on patents, relating to the theme of ‘war and peace’. In this sense, patents are understood as both legal documents and property rights, and conceptualised in a variety of disciplinary ways, ranging from legal tools to secure economic monopolies, to ‘weapons’ protecting national interests. In so doing, the workshop aims to explore patents as devices that create and redistribute power, and as active protagonists fuelling and constituting so-called “patent wars”.

More about the workshop and how to submit papers (PDF)

Any questions can be directed to the organizers of the workshop: Johanna DahlinJosé BellidoMartin Fredriksson.


Machines of Law and Intellectual Property as Legal Machinery.


20 June 2022

BST 12.00-12.15; CET 13:00-13:15; EST 7.00-7.15; PST 7.00-7.15; AEST 21.00-21.15
Welcome, Organisers.

BST 12.15-13.00; CET 13:15-14:00; EST 7.15-8.00; AEST 21.15-22.00
Devaluing Trademarks in an AI Driven Marketplace, Christine Haight Farley.
Commentator: Marc Stuhldreier.
Chair: Matilda Arvidsson.


BST 13.15-14.00; CET 14:15-15:00; EST 8.15-9.00; PST 5.15-6.00; AEST 22.15-23.00
Human Labour and AI Creativity: Beyond the Author/Tool Dichotomy, Kristofer Erickson.
Commentator: Ulf Petrusson.
Chair: Véronique Pouillard.


BST 14.15- 15.45; CET 15:15-16:45; EST 9.15-10.45; PST 6.00-7.45; AEST 23.00-00.45
Technologies of Peace: Enemy Patents, Custodial Functions, and the Interwar Construction of Security, Anna Saunders.

UNESCO on the Stage: UNESCO and Algerian Performers Approaching the Rome Convention, Minja Mitrovic.

Chair: Shane Burke.

16:45-17:45 Mingle event.

Day 2

21 JUNE 2022

BST 8.15-9.00; CET 9:15-10:00; EST 3.15-4.00 PST 0.15-1.00; AEST 17.15-18.00
Artefactual history of copyright’s subject matter, Ewa Laskowska-Litak.
Commentator: Kathy Bowrey.
Chair: Martin Fredriksson.


BST 9.15-10.00; CET 10:15-11:00; EST 4.15-5.00; PST 1.15-2.00; AEST 18.15-19.00

Hovering between institutions: Negotiating bureaucracies and the harmonization of intellectual property in a European context, Marius Buning.
Commentator: Fiona Macmillan.
Chair: Merima Bruncevic.


BST 10.15-11.00; CET 11:15-12:00; EST 5.15-6.00; PST 2.15-3.00; AEST 19.15-20.00
Replicability Crisis and Intellectual Property Law, Ofer Tur-Sinai & Or Cohen Sasson.
Commentator: Gabriel Galvez-Behar.
Chair: Frantzeska Papadopoulou.


BST 12.30-13.15; CET 13:30-14:15; EST 7.30-8.15; PST 4.30-5.15; AEST 21.30-22.15
Inking IP: Tattoo Machines & Law-Making, Melanie Stockton-Brown.
Commentator: Jeanne Fromer.
Chair: José Bellido.

BST 13.15-14.00; CET 14:15-15:00; EST 8.15-9.00; PST 5.15-6.00; AEST 22.15-23.00
Machines, surveillance and forced labour, Johanna Dahlin.
Commentator: Stina Teilmann Lock.
Chair: Kara Swanson.


BST 14.15-15.45; CET 15:15-16:45; EST 9.15-10.45; PST 6.15-7.45; AEST 23.15-00.45
Emergent Spaces of the Mechanical Author: Ernst Krenek and Interwar Mechanical-Musical Rights, Johan Larson Lindal.

Looming Questions: Could an Indian Weaver Patent a Loom in the Early-Twentieth, Subhadeep Chowdhury.

Chair: Marta Iljadica.

BST 16.00-17.00; CET 17:00-18:00; EST 11.00-12.00; PST 8.00-9.00; AEST 1.00-2.00
Governing board only, Board meeting.

19:00 Dinner.

Day 3

22 June 2022

BST 9.00-9.45; CET 10:00-10:45; EST 4.00-4.45; PST 1.00-1.45; AEST 18.00-18.45
The Machinery of Creation. Oulipo Poetry, Copyright & Rules of Constraint, Kathy Bowrey and Janet Chan.
Commentator: Eva Hemmungs Wirtén.
Chair: Marius Buning.


BST 10.00-11.30; CET 11:00-12:30; EST 5.00-6.30; PST 2.00-3.30; AEST 19.00-20.30
The voice and the machine: Performing music and theatre on the early radio (1921-1928), Anna Marie Skråmestø Nesheim.

Towards Innovations in Intellectual Property Studies: Using Topic Modeling to Explore the Limits of Copyright Law, Jamaica Jones. 

Chair: Hyo Yoon Kang.

BST 11.40-12.15; CET 12:40-13:15; EST 6.40-7.15; PST 3.40-4.15; AEST 20.40-21.15
Closing remarks, Organisers/Ulf Petrusson.

The workshop is hosted by Merima Bruncevic and the Center for Intellectual Property at the Department of Law, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

This is a hybrid event : in person & on Zoom.

For further details see University of Gothenburg Events Page.

Call For Papers

Machines of Law and Intellectual Property as Legal Machinery

20-22 June 2022

The 13th Annual Workshop of the International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property (ISHTIP) will be hosted by Center for Intellectual Property at the Department of Law, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

The workshop will have a hybrid form, meaning we will cater for both physical and online participation.

We are going to be exploring themes connected to machines in and of law, specifically how law in general, and intellectual property law in particular, can be, and are, affected by machines and by machinic agencies. Machines and machinery resonate across the IP spectrum and across disciplines, from early modern innovations to the contemporary challenges of artificial intelligence. We are especially interested in papers that explore historical and contemporary connotations that encourage disciplinary self-reflexivity and conversations. Interdisciplinary approaches are strongly encouraged, particularly with respect to:

  • legal subjecthood e.g. technologically augmented human beings as well as non-human, less-than-human and more-than-human agencies;
  • materialities e.g. legal classification, administration, properties;
  • practices e.g. creative and scientific, information management, knowledge circulation, sharing; and
  • conceptions of rights and domain e.g. IP Constitutionalism, private power etc.

We invite participants to discuss how machines have influenced and challenged regulation over time. It could both be a matter of exploring contemporary challenges to law, speculative or artistic approaches or responses to machine regulation, as well as historical and theoretical discussions on the broad theme of law and machines. We particularly invite contributions on:

  • creation: e.g. automatic cultural production and invention
  • immaterial labour: e.g. immaterial machinic production, decision making and creativity
  • agency: e.g. machinic rights, responsibility and sustainability, artificial intelligence 
  • jurisdiction: e.g. decentralisation, territoriality, smart or technologically intensified spaces
  • law as machine: e.g. systemic boundaries, ontologies of IP law, convergences of public and private regulation
  • social engineering in the service of IP objectives: e.g. public goals and constitutionalism, dehumanisation of decision-making, trolls, bots, etc.

Guidelines for contributors

We welcome papers from all academic disciplines. Papers that address this call from an historical, artistic or theoretical perspective are particularly welcomed, as are contributions from scholars working across disciplines or using speculative and alternative methods. Established and junior scholars are encouraged to submit papers.

Proposers should be aware that authors (except for PhD students) do not present their own papers at ISHTIP workshops. Rather, a discussant, normally from a discipline other than the home discipline of the author, presents a brief summary and critique of papers to facilitate a more interdisciplinary discussion and build scholarly discourse across disciplines.

To allow this, complete papers must be submitted by 10 May 2022. The papers should not have been previously published.

To be considered for the workshop, please submit a 300-word abstract of your proposed paper as well as a one-paragraph bio and 2-page CV by 30 January 2022 by email to:

Important dates

Date for Submission of proposals: 30 January 2022

Expected Date for notification of acceptance: 10 March 2022

Date for submission of full papers: 10 May 2022

Hosted by the Center for Intellectual Property, Department of Law, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Workshop Organising Committee: Merima Bruncevic; Matilda Arvidsson; Frantzeska Papadopoulou; Anna Holmberg Berkmann; Eva Hemmungs Wirtén; Kathy Bowrey; Fiona Macmillan; Isabella Alexander; Maurizio Borghi.

Identity and IP: how who we are informs our work

ISHTIP Online Discussion. 19/20 July 2021

A discussion of personal and identity-based perspectives exploring how these connect in some way with IP writing and research.

Attendees: Fady Aoun, Kathy Bowrey, Veit Erlmann, Susy Frankel, Hyo Yoon Kang, Jessica Lai, Sharon Le Gall, Toni Lester, Charleston Thomas, Hai-Yuean Tualima, Andrew Ventimiglia, Andrea Wallace.

Academic Open Letter in Support of the TRIPS Intellectual Property Waiver Proposal

July 2021

ISHTIP members Prof Graham Dutfield (University of Leeds), Dr Hyo Yoon Kang (Kent Law School), Dr Luke McDonagh (London School of Economics), along with Dr Aisling McMahon (Maynooth University) and Dr Siva Thambisetty (London School of Economics) have drafted an open letter signed by over 100 IP academics in support of the Indian and South African proposal for temporary TRIPS waiver “as a necessary and proportionate legal measure towards the clearing of existing intellectual property barriers to scaling up of production of COVID-19 health technologies in a direct, consistent and effective fashion”.

Drawing upon the history and theory of intellectual property, the letter acknowledges that patents have never been absolute rights. They are monopoly rights granted to serve the public interest. Patents “ must not be allowed to stand in the way of measures designed to make accessible the health technologies needed to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, where universal global access is essential for the global public good.”

Monopolies over tacit and informal information, are also implicated in the current lack of global capacity for vaccine production and other health technologies, as well as in enabling their inequitable distribution.

The letter calls on the governments of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Australia, Brazil, Japan, Norway, Switzerland and the European Union to drop their opposition at the World Trade Organisation and to support the TRIPS waiver proposal.

You can read the full letter and list of signatories here: