Student guide Faculty of Law A.Y. 2007/08

Industrial Law
Aim of the course
The course will illustrate the law governing industrial property (trademarks and patents) and unfair competition, partly by analysing the case law. The analysis of these legal institutions will take account of the financial justifications for the protection they provide. Students are expected to take an active part in lectures, through regular study of the materials assigned and participation in lectures, which will be organised in discussion form as far as possible.
Note: The amendments introduced by the Industrial Property Rights Code, published in the Official Gazette, Ordinary Supplement no. 52, on 4 March 2005, which came into force on 19 March 2005, will be examined during the course.

Part I - Economics of industrial property rights and reasons for protection.

1. Introduction.
1.1 The patent and trademark concepts, and the subject matter of the protection (brief reference to protection of authorship). The law governing unfair competition: original functions and current interpretations.

2. Economics of industrial property rights and reasons for protection.
2.1 Economics of innovation, and patent protection.
2.2 The economic function of the trademark in competition between companies.
2.3 Meanings and functions of competition law: unfair competition and antitrust legislation.

Part II - Positive law

1. The trademark.
1.1 Development of the legislation: from the Trademarks Act to the EU Directive.
1.2 Nature of the trademark and distinguishing function.
1.3 Requirements for validity: distinguishing capacity, novelty.
1.4 Notoriety and pre-use.
1.5 Territorial extension and the principle of exhaustion.
1.6 Acquisition of rights: registration.
1.7 Use and abuse of trademarks.
1.8 Protection of rights: passing-off and infringement of trademarks, and methods of protection.
1.9 Nullity and extinction.
1.10 Unregistered trademarks.

2. The patent.
2.1 Requirements for patentability.
2.2 The patenting procedure.
2.3 Rights arising out of the patent.
2.4 Protection methods.
2.5 Extension of patent: extension in time; territoriality and the principle of exhaustion.
2.6 Circulation of patents: the licence.
2.7 The EU legislation and the European patent.
2.8 International patent protection.
2.9 Protection of know-how and the law governing industrial secrecy (cross-reference).

3. Unfair competition.
3.1 History and development of the subject.
3.2 Constituent factors (parties, criterion of fairness, loss).
3.3 Passing-off, protection of form, and patent protections.
3.4 The general terms of s. 2598.3, and typical cases.

Students who attend lectures will take a written exam, and possibly an oral exam, at the end of the course. Students who do not attend lectures will take an oral exam.

Reading list
Vanzetti, A., Di Cataldo, V., Manuale di diritto industriale, Giuffrè, Milan, latest edition.

Precedents and other materials (some of them in English) will be provided to students during the course.

Attendance at lectures is strongly recommended.