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February 20, 2006

CONTACTS:
Frank Pietrucha: (202) 543-6750; frank@definitive-communications.com
Claire Duggan: (202) 994-0616; cduggan@law.gwu.edu
Matt Lindsay: (202) 994-1423; mlindsay@gwu.edu

GW LAW ESTABLISHES FIRST-OF-ITS-KIND RESEARCH AND EDUCATION CENTER TO EXPLORE ROLE OF CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Creative and Innovative Economy Center to Examine Legal, Commercial, Institutional, and Globalization Issues Pertaining to Economic Development Around the Globe

WASHINGTON -- The George Washington University Law School announced today the establishment of a research and education center dedicated to studying the impact of creativity and innovation on economic development. The Creative and Innovative Economy Center (CIEC) celebrated its launch in Geneva, Switzerland, at a roundtable discussion for government trade representatives from several dozen developing countries.

"We expect the center to serve as a model for how academic/private sector partnerships can have a significant impact on important global economic and public policy issues," said GW Law Dean Frederick M. Lawrence. "This is an exciting development for the Law School and for The George Washington University. The goals and activities of the center not only complement our long-standing strengths in the area of intellectual property law, they also create valuable opportunities for collaboration with other schools of the University."

The CIEC conducts research and educational activities that encourage developing nations to embrace creativity and innovation as tools to compete more effectively in the world economy. Stressing a multi-disciplinary approach, the center examines legal, commercial, institutional, and globalization issues pertaining to economic development. Programs will be conducted at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., in Europe at the Munich Intellectual Property Law Center, and in developing countries around the world.

"Creativity and innovation are the cornerstones of every successful economy," noted Michael P. Ryan, the center's director. "The citizens of developing countries are entitled to reap the same economic rewards enjoyed by their industrialized neighbors. We hope our research and educational activities inspire these individuals."

At the roundtable in Geneva, Ryan released his report, "Brazil's Quiet Bio-Innovation Revolution." The report details how Brazil's bio-medical innovation system and intellectual property strategy have been substantially reformed. This reform could contribute new drugs and medical knowledge to fight disease in the developing world and thereby alleviate the so-called "10/90 Research Gap" (only 10 percent of global health research is related to issues in developing countries, which account for 90 percent of the world's health problems). Trade representatives in attendance discussed how creativity and innovation can be used to better stimulate their economies. Speakers and delegates focused on the case of Brazil, a country that has historically challenged the global intellectual property rights system. A copy of the report will be made available shortly at www.law.gwu.edu/ciec.

Ryan and his associates will be conducting research and facilitating educational events on more than a dozen topics this year. In 2006, the CIEC will address bio-medical innovation in Brazil and Jordan, software in India, music in Southeast Asia, health security in Africa, technology commercialization in Korea, publishing in Eastern Europe, and intellectual property public administration in the Middle East.

Ryan is the author of Knowledge Diplomacy: Global Competition and the Politics of Intellectual Property (1998) and Playing by the Rules: American Trade Power and Diplomacy in the Pacific (1995). He edited a special issue of the journal Business Ethics Quarterly released in October 2005, devoted to "The Ethical Responsibilities of Drugs, Patents, and Health." Ryan previously served on the faculties of the University of Michigan School of Business and the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and School of Business.

GW professors currently working with the CIEC include, Martin J. Adelman, Theodore and James Pedas Family Professor of Intellectual Property and Technology Law; Robert Brauneis, associate professor of law; and Jennifer Spencer, associate professor of international business.

Accredited by the American Bar Association and a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools, The George Washington University Law School enrolls approximately 1,800 students each year. GW Law has been a leader in intellectual property education and scholarship for more than a hundred years and today has one of the most highly regarded academic specialty programs in the United States.

For more information about CIEC visit www.law.gwu.edu/ciec.
For more news about GW, visit the GW News Center at
www.gwnewscenter.org.

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