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 Dr. Malte Köllner, who lectures in our distance learning course “IP in digital technologies” about “AI and inventorship” and in the MIPLM.

Dr. Malte Köllner, from Köllner & Partner, is a German and European Patent Attorney as well as Trademark and Design Attorney. In 2022 he was named Germany’s Attorney of the Year by the German business newspaper “Handelsblatt”. Most recently, he co-initiated the worldwide DABUS project, clarifying the patentability of inventions generated by artificial intelligence.

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

I have a master in physics and a PhD in physical chemistry. In addition, I have a law degree and was trained as German and European patent attorney.

How did I become patent attorney? After more than 10 years in research I was looking for a next step and a new area of learning. As my brother was attorney at law and I liked his stories about his clients and what he did for them, combining this with my natural science background logically lead to the professional choice of patent attorney. However, back then I didn’t know the job exists. And friend had to help me.

Why IP management? Patent law is a piece of technology policy. Clients don’t want patents, they want success in their business and hope that patents can help. So, here we are: How can patents be made to help my clients in their business?

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

At the CEIPI-EPO course, I am teaching patents for AI-generated inventions. Inventions are generated by AI every day. So it is relevant for many industries. However, until today, it is like walking on uncharted land. The area is completely new and loads of questions are still open.

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

That, I think, everybody needs to answer for themselves. The clear advantage is for people located far away from Strasbourg or Munich.

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?

Theory alone is not enough. Particularly in the legal area, innovations typically come from practice. The DABUS project is an example of this: me and a bunch of patent attorneys drove it forward.

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

You are better positioned than I am to answer this question on a general level. As far as my module is concerned, AI-generated inventions, students will gain more safety in handling these cases as they come to their desk.