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Technology Law Conference Draws Judges to Campus

by Tamara Keith, Student Contributor
posted June 10, 1998

Forty federal judges will come to campus next week to brush up on technology law courtesy of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology. This private workshop, scheduled for June 17-19, is the second intellectual property training session for judges hosted by the center. The workshop is being presented in association with the Federal Judicial Center.

Founded in 1996, the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology has organized three conferences and two workshops related to law and technology. Most recently the center sponsored conferences on biotechnology – specifically addressing issues of gene sequencing and patent law – and intellectual property and contract law, spurred by Uniform Commercial Code 2B.

“There has been a tremendous boom in the information technology business and consequently a boom in the need for lawyers who can provide advice and legal assistance,” said Professor Pamela Samuelson, who has a joint appointment in the School of Information Management and Systems and Boalt Hall School of Law.

Through classes, conferences, workshops, a student journal and faculty-written books, the center influences technology law both by aiding current legal professionals and training law students for future careers in technology law.

“We see it as a good training ground for students (who will join) this cutting edge field,” said Samuelson.

“Berkeley was ahead of other law schools in seeing the importance of putting an emphasis on information technologies,” she said.

“In broad terms (this field) involves all areas of law heavily impacted by emerging technologies, most obviously intellectual property,” said center co-founder Robert Merges, professor of law, in an interview last year.

The interdisciplinary center includes faculty from the Haas School of Business; the Institute of Management, Innovation and Organization (which houses the center); Boalt Hall School of Law; the School of Information Management and Systems; the Department of Economics and the School of Public Policy.

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