The IP-Management program at CEIPI is by far the most successful executive management program in IP in Europe. Since 2005, CEIPI has offered a comprehensive IP Management education, for which it develops case studies with C-Level executives and heads of IP from industry to prove the success of its methods, skills and knowledge. The students and lecturers of the program come from industry, private practice, and institutions from around the globe. The IP-Management education at CEIPI is modular, ranging from University Certificates, over the Diplôme Universitaire Intellectual Property Business Administration (DU IPBA), the Master of Intellectual Property Law and Management (MIPLM, Master (II), LLM) to the PhD in IP management. Here, is an interview with Bastian Best, who lectures in our distance learning course “IP in the Industry 4.0” about “Claim structures of digital patents”.

Bastian Best started his career with a degree in computer science before he joined the German patent law firm Bardehle Pagenberg. In May 2021 he founded his own patent law firm, BESTPATENT, where he helps companies make sense of patents in the digital transformation. His special interest lies in the patentability issues involved in artificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain, cryptography and the Internet of Things. He is passionate to inform the broad public about those topics via his Webpage, LinkedIn and YouTube channels. Since November 2021 he is Vice President of the International Institute for IP Management (I3PM).  He is also guest lecturer at the Center for Digital Technology and Management (CDTM) and the Leiden Law school. Please watch his story on IP management. 

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1. What is your professional background and how did you come to the interesting area of IP and IP management?

My name is Bastian Best, I’m a European patent attorney who helps companies make sense of patents in the digital transformation. My academic background is computer science, and I work in private practice with my own niche patent law firm out of my hometown Munich, Germany. 

My experience it that, especially with digital innovations, companies tend to struggle with how to obtain high-quality patent protection, because

    • On the one hand, digital inventions are difficult to grasp, you can’t put them on your table and look at them from all sides, and
    • On the other hand, there are still many misconceptions, like “software isn’t patentable anyway, so why should we bother?”

This is why I’m so interested in helping companies improve their management of digital IP assets.

2. Which course are you teaching and why do you think that this content is especially important for the participants?

I am teaching the Chapter about digital patents, and especially about digital patent claims, which define the scope of the exclusive right. I mean, today in the ubiquitous digital transformation, it is very important for students to understand how a patent has to look like to have value, because you can make – or your outside counsel can make – seemingly small mistakes, which can have a dramatic impact on the value of the resulting digital patent.

3. What do you think are the advantages of taking a course in fully distance learning?

I’m running my own IP firm fully digitally. And I guess during the pandemic we have all learned that it is perfectly possible to collaborate purely online. And nothing else applies to education and learning, in my opinion.

So, I think distance learning is really the future of learning. Because the students can learn where and when they want, and at their own pace and convenience. So, they can watch any lecture as often they want and still contact the lecturers, if they want.

4. The distance learning courses provide theoretical knowledge and are supported by practitioners from companies and private practice. How does this combination benefit the students?

I think the courses are so valuable because they offer the students content, which they can directly apply in their daily work. But the courses are not only practical tutorials, but really stand on a solid academic basis.

Also, the course involves many real-life case studies. So the students can learn how the knowledge is actually applied successfully in the wild. And this use of real case studies ensures that the material is always practically relevant.

5. Which qualifications do the students acquire and how does it help them on the job market?

In the knowledge economies of today with highly specialized job profiles, companies always search for talented and trained professionals, who bring more to the team than just the basic qualification. This course gives the graduates skills, which are highly needed and requested by employers, and this way opens them new opportunities.