The first months of 2023 have been busy and productive for FICPI’s largest committee, properly known as Study & Work, but more commonly referred to as CET (an acronym for the French title of the group).

The fast start is impressive given that almost an entirely new CET leadership team was elected at the FICPI World Congress in Cannes as recently as September last year, changes which included me taking over as President.

All FICPI’s major committees have set a goal in 2023 of strengthening communications with the wider FICPI global community, so you can expect to hear from me, and the other committee presidents, on a regular basis as the year unfolds.

One of the initiatives that has kept CET busy in the first quarter has been the preparations for an in-person seminar in Atlanta on April 19th 2023, looking at ‘Developments in IP Law’.  There is a strong agenda for the afternoon event at the Kimpton Shane Hotel and I hope to see a good turnout from my US-based FICPI colleagues – and their professional guests, as the event is not restricted to FICPI members.

There is a lot more information at

Alongside this seminar, we have our first in person CET Leadership meeting along with the Bureau and the Practice Management Committee (PMC), at which we will be discussing the direction of a number of topics we are working on – watch this space.


Meanwhile, we have been co-ordinating and supporting the FICPI European National Sections and Associations which submitted points of view to the special meeting of the European Patent Office (EPO) on March 23rd, which explored a European consensus position on the thorny topic of Substantive Patent Law Harmonisation (SPLH). I was pleased to personally represent FICPI-UK and you will no doubt be hearing more from FICPI’s special reporter on SPLH, Jerome Collin.

If you want to learn more about FICPI’s thoughts on SPLH, you will find informative videos from Jerome and other FICPI members at

Other IP Office meetings

Other IP Office meetings that CET has been coordinating attendance at and reporting include:

  • The Patent Co-operation Treaty (PCT) Working Group, hosted by WIPO on February 6th-8th, attended for FICPI by Stefano Gotra.
  • The Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore, also hosted by WIPO, on February 27th – March 3rd, attended by FICPI’s Rowan Joseph.
  • The EUIPO’s Stakeholder Quality Assurance Panel (which goes by the delightful acronym of SQAP) at audit meetings in March, with Paula Sailas representing FICPI.
  • The EPO’s Standing Advisory Committee Working Party on Rules on March 16th, with FICPI’s Antonio Pizzoli in attendance.
  • The EUIPO User Group Meeting on March 27th, with me representing FICPI.

Look for reports on all these meetings in CET’s pages on our website

While all that was taking place, in the background, CET has been drafting agendas for a bilateral meeting on March 28th with KIPO, a USPTO meeting scheduled for mid-April, after the Atlanta seminar, and a mid-May meeting with WIPO.

We may be the largest FICPI committee, but as you can see, we also have a lot of ground to cover.

If you are a FICPI member and would like to get involved in CET and one of our seven sub-committees, each looking at a specialist topic, please do get in touch with me at [email protected].