The "CET" is FICPI’s Study & Work Committee (Commission d'Etude et Travail). The largest of FICPI's committees with more than 200 members active in one or more of seven specialised sub-groups.
Using highly effective working methods, the CET is able to produce high quality, detailed opinions, often at very short notice.
When FICPI’s primary objective was to promote reforms in the texts of IP conventions, legislation and regulations, the questions to be placed on the agenda of a meeting of FICPI’s Executive Committee (“ExCo”) were generally required to be submitted first to the CET, which distributed the work between the sub-groups. The sub-groups produced reports which, if approved by the CET, were sent to the Communications Committee for publication, or to the Secretary General for distribution to the ExCo delegates.
Now FICPI’s remit is wider, encompassing matters of IP practice management, not all ExCo matters are referred to the CET, but the CET remains responsible for organising and managing FICPI’s work on substantive IP issues. The study of all administrative or legislative reforms and all improvements to international treaties and conventions remains central to FICPI’s work, with the object of facilitating the exercise by inventors and businesses of their rights, of increasing their security, and of simplifying procedure or formalities.
The CET therefore keeps itself informed of proposals for amendment of IP treaties, laws and regulations and of significant court cases, and keeps an eye open for any practical difficulties faced by IP attorneys or their clients in dealing with IP Offices. Members of the CET regularly participate in committee meetings and working groups organised by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and leading IP Offices, such as the European Patent Office (EPO) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), making interventions as it sees fit from the perspective of the independent IP practitioner.
The CET takes the lead in organising the topics for discussion with international and regional organisations interested in IP, such as WIPO, WTO, the EPO, EUIPO and the European Commission, and leading national IP Offices, such as the USPTO, JPO, CNIPA and KIPO, at bilateral meetings which FICPI organises at least annually.
Where appropriate, the CET drafts submissions to such international, regional and national IP organisations and IP Offices, which are submitted to the ExCo for approval. The CET prepares draft resolutions for adoption by the ExCo on issues of substantive IP law and practice.
In keeping with another one of FICPI’s primary aims, the CET prepares regular reports on changes in IP laws, treaties, rules or practice guidelines, significant case-law, and its ongoing activities for publication to FICPI members by the Communications Committee.
The President of the CET is elected by the ExCo. The CET further includes at least one vice president, a Reporter General and an Assistant Reporter General, who, together with the president are responsible for managing the CET.
Each of the seven sub-groups has a Chair and Reporter. The groups deal respectively with:
- Trade marks
- International patent matters
- European and other regional patent matters,
- Tech-related patent issues
- Pharma and biotech patents
- Litigation and enforcement
The Chair and members of the sub-groups are chosen by the CET, after consulting the Bureau and the Council for opinions, from lists of candidates including members of the national associations or national sections and, in suitable cases, individual members. By proposing members of the groups, the member national sections and associations are able to influence FICPI policy.
Members of the Bureau and the presidents of PMC and TEC are ex officio members of the CET.
The largest commission is the CET, the Study & Work Committee, whose acronym derives from the French name “Commission d’Étude et de Travail“.
The CET comprises a number of specialised commissions dealing with trade mark matters, industrial designs and copyright, international patent questions, European, EU and other regional patent systems, patent issues arising in specialist subject matter areas such as computer-implemented inventions and biotechnology, IP litigation and IP issues in the Asian region.
More than 200 FICPI members from across the globe dedicate a great deal of their time to CET matters.