Privacy Policies as a Tool for Intellectual Property Rights Management: The WIPF 2022 Conference

Privacy and Intellectual Property have more in common than might be assumed at first glance: Both are “intangible assets” and both are under constant pressure to provide monetary benefits for companies and individuals. This leads to the approach developed by the EU-funded projects SPECIAL [2017-2019] and it’s successor TRAPEZE [2021-2023]. These projects focus on the management and exploitation of such digital assets using machine-readable policies.

One of the world’s most prominent conferences on Intellectual Property is the WorldIPForum (WIPF). The organizers of the 2023 event in Bangkok, Thailand, approached TRAPEZE asking for a substantial contribution to the conference and possibly other means of collaboration. Dr. Martin Kurze, Deutsche Telekom’s representative in the TRAPEZE project, used the opportunity to present and promote TRAPEZE and the EU’s approach to protecting citizens’ personal data while enabling businesses based on the same data.

Dr. Martin Kurze, Deutsche Telekom’s representative in the TRAPEZE project gives a presentation.
Dr. Martin Kurze, Deutsche Telekom’s representative in the TRAPEZE project gives a presentation.

From 10 to 12 October 2022, the IP community met and listened to the results of the TRAPEZE project. Martin Kurze gave an invited presentation on the “EU Innovation Action TRAPEZE”, highlighting the advanced and flexible concept of privacy policies and the “real world/industrial” use of the results (see photo 1). The information and suggestions were positively received by representatives of the various industries and government agencies present.

An interesting side benefit was a fruitful exchange about the various legal contexts of the companies/participants present: most participants considered the European GDPR as a model for other world regions. The GDPR was recognized not only as the first, but also as a very well thought-out and powerful regulation. The general opinion was: If we can make our (IT) processes EU-/GDPR compliant, we can do it anywhere. Moreover, TRAPEZE-style policies were seen as a very valuable approach to protect citizens’ rights while still enabling legal and fully transparent data sharing.

The presentation and the subsequent discussion also showed that the idea behind the TRAPEZE language also appeals to professionals from other disciplines such as patent attorneys and IP law experts.

Privacy as a subject of investigation and discussion was also the focus of a WIPF panel discussion: “The Collision of Data Privacy and Cybersecurity”, moderated by Martin Kurze. Here too, technology and technical issues were discussed as causes of security breaches and the impairment of citizens’ privacy. At the same time, technologies such as the TRAPEZE language and tools were also seen as solutions to these and other challenges.

During this event, TRAPEZE representative Martin Kurze received an award as “Stalwart and Icon of Industry” for the work done in the project and during the conference.

Martin Kurze receives the “Stalwart and Icon of Industry” award
Martin Kurze receives the “Stalwart and Icon of Industry” award.

We can conclude that privacy and privacy-aware data monetisation and in particular technological means to promote both, gained relevance and attention at the WIPF conference which shows that TRAPEZE’s work is relevant outside its core target audience and influences the view and perspective of legal experts around the world.

Blog information provided by Martin Kurze