Intellectual property is a key missing link in the country's innovation policy. This is not limited to inadequate protection and poor IP systems; rather, much of it is due to the researcher’s ignorance of the procedure of obtaining patents for inventions; the researchers usually had poor knowledge of patents and did not consult patent documents in the course of their research activities.
Believing in the potential of local inventors to contribute to the country’s intellectual and economic wealth, Iran’s Kanoon IP commits to enhance its services that demonstrate the national capability of innovations. One of these core services is building IP capacity among Iranian and other Farsi language people worldwide initiated by KanoonIP academy.
Aiming at building IP capacity in Persian language people and increasing public access to IP-related education materials, Kanoon IP academy has provided a platform and launched a series of training webinars since 2018.
Despite the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, the activities of the kanoon IP Academy continued in 2020, In this article, an overview of KanonIP activities of Kanoon IP will is given and the most important measures taken are introduced.
Since the Kanoon IP Academy estabilishment, the scope of its activities, both quantitatively and qualitatively, has been expanded significantly. Kanoon IP academy conducted 57 training courses in 2019, while in 2020, the number of events increased by 116%, reaching 123 in 2020. Concerning the number of participants, in 2019, a total of 1517 participants from 16 cities in Iran attended the training courses designed by Kanoon IP which were mostly face-to-face workshops. This number reached 6350 in 2020, indicated an increase of 319 percent. Figure 1 shows an overview of the academy's performance over these two years.
Figure 1:Kanoon IP activities at a glance: comparison between 2019-2020
As shown in Figure 1, the number of events was increased by doubled, while the number of the participants increased by quadruple in 2020 and reached to 15970 people/hour.
2) Distance Learning Programs
The focuses of the activities of KanoonIP Academy in 2019 has switched from face-to-face training courses to online webinars. Figure 2 shows the general comparison of the number of face-to-face and webinar- workshops held over the past two years. To better understand, consider the fact that the share of distance-learning courses held in 2018 was only 14% (8 distance Learning courses besides 49 face-to-face workshops), which shows a 94% increase in 2019 and 2020 ( 116 online webinars and only 7 face-to-face workshops).
Figure 2: Types of conducted training courses; comparison between 2019 and 2020
These shifting approaches can be analyzed from two perspectives. On the one hand, the experience of holding training webinars in 2019 and their favorable feedbacks, resulted in the KanoonIP academy shifting event's types. Kanoon IP academy realized this approach enables the easy and direct participation of interested people from all over the country. On the other hand, after the COVID-19 outbreaks, extra attention was drawn to the online courses; the restrictions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated the process of shifting to online webinar courses. Therefore, Kanoon IP pursued online webinars more seriously. Interestingly, the seasonal webinars conducted by KanoonIP were welcomed widely by the participants.
3) Kanoon IP Academy; As Organizer and/or Partner
The Kanoon IP Academy training courses cover a wide range of general and specialized topics in the field of intellectual property. Regardless of the type of organizing events, Kanoon IP academy itself plays a significant role in designing most of these courses based on requirements. Among the 123 events held in 2019, in the 82 events, the academy was either organizer or designer, which indicates a 67% share. Figure 3 shows the events held in 2019 from the perspective of the role of Kanoon IP Academy in organizing them.
Figure 3 - The role of Kanoon IP Academy in the events held
In the Kanoon IP training calendar, some topics, repeated in each seasononal training, with a total of 41 webinars. A total of 36 webinarsthe webinars designed by Kanoon IP and conducted by a collaboration of KanoonIP and the Health Ministry. For the Gear Event, Kanoon IP orgnizedand conducted 5 webinars.
Diverse, New, and Audience-Oriented training Webinars
The Academy of Iran Patent Center has always tried to present its educational and extension content practically and completely based on the needs of the audience. This strategy, which can be described in terms of "audience-oriented training", brought a considerable variety of course titles to the Academy's 2020 training courses.
The "Tuesday with the taste of intellectual property" or “Tuesdays with IP” program was launched in 2018 by Kanoon IP Academy to build IP capacity in persian-language people and increase public access to IP-related education materials. The “Tuesdays with IP”, welcomes not only the participants from inside Iran but also has designed for all Persian-language people from all over the world who need access to Farsi IP-related educational materials.
To facilitate access of interested audiences with no possibility to physical attendance in the Kanoon IP conducting seminars and workshops, KanoonIP academy conducted training programs through online webinars workshops. With regards to the appreciation of many of the interns and the inquiries for access to more topics, Kanoon IP organized to expand the number of training topics on a regular schedule. ‘Get a taste of IP on Tuesdays’ program, as a series of webinars that are being held on Tuesdays on different topics according to the interns’ requirements.
· Fundamentals of Intellectual Property;
· Patentability in the healthcare section;
· Patent importance in the protection of innovative technologies;
· Fundamentals of patent information search;
· Basics of searching in Esp@cenet Worldwide database’
· Overview of PCT System for globally Protection of inventions: potentials and advantages;
· Basics of searching in PatenScope, Lens, and Espacenet databases
· Fundamental of Intellectual Property rights;
· Patent as a Tool for the Protection of Innovative Technologies;
· Fundamental of Copyrights;
· Impacts and use of copyright in Business;
· Fundamental of Trademark;
· Fundamental of Industrial Design;
· Trade Secret;
· Geographical indications;
Moreover, two other topics titled as “presenting Kanoon IP service and facilities”, and “instruction to filing patent application abroad via Kanoon IP portal’ have been designed based on the inquiries of inventors who are interested in filing their invention in the foreign states and need Kanoon IP services and supports.
Out of a total of 41 events planned in the academy's educational calendars, only one was a face-to-face event, and of the remaining 40 webinars, 37 webinars were related to "Tuesdays with IP" program.
One of the special points about the 2020 "Tuesdays with IP" program was its remarkable thematic diversity. While the KanoonIP academy is primarily focused on training patents related aspects (patent filing, patent information and patent applications), however, the academy in its 2020 callenders added various areas of intellectual property, such as trade secrets, industrial designs, trademarks, and geographical indications, due to inquiries of the participant who needed to learn about their fundamentals and useing them in their business.
Due to a significant increase of researches in the country in various fields, the economic return of the researches has been recognized also as one of the important aims. With this regard during recent years, special attention has been paid to the issue of intellectual property as a tool for protecting research achievements.
Far too often, researchers are misinformed about the role and the possibilities arising around patents and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). In the designed courses by Kanoon IP Academy, participants basically learn what IPR is (with a special focus on patents), and why it matters. Moreover, researchers need to be familiar with the importance of patent information to avoidance of reworking on the same subject research as well as applying the patent information in the research and development institute.
To meet these requirements, KanoonIP's planned webinars will be held to express the importance of intellectual property in a practical language. The series of webinars will also address other needs of researchers including drafting patent matters as well as gaining patent information.
This event which was held to honor the research week in Iran consisted of a series of training and promotional webinars. The webinars have been designed by KanoonIP academy to promote using IP knowledge in directing applied research that contributes to finding solutions to various technical issues.
In the Gear event which will be held over five days, from December 26th to December 30th, five webinar titles were presented as:
"Intellectual property; to be, or not to be”;
“Whether a patent would be a helpful tool to protect my idea?”
"The art of drafting a patent";
"Why reinventing the wheel?” and
“A word before is worth two after".
Close Cooperation with Various Institutions
Cooperation with educational, research, and industrial institutions is one of the key elements in the development of the activities of Iran’s Kanoon IP academy. The result of this approach was the holding of numerous webinars at various universities and collaborations with institutions such as the Ministry of Health and Medical Education, the Ministry of Science, the Ministry of Justice, the Chamber of Commerce, the Iran National Innovation Fund, and the Kaareno event, which is shown in Figure 4.
Figure 4: Kanoon IP collaboration with varius Institutions