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COP 21: Innovation under Climate Change

Fabrice Mattei spoke at at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP21, in Paris.

What is the COP 21?

The international political response to climate change began at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, where the ‘Rio Convention’ included the adoption of the UN Framework on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This convention set out a framework for action aimed at stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to avoid “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” The UNFCCC which entered into force on 21 March 1994, now has a near-universal membership of 195 parties.

The main objective of the annual Conference of Parties (COP) is to review the Convention’s implementation. The first COP took place in Berlin in 1995 and significant meetings since then have included COP3 where the Kyoto Protocol was adopted, COP11 where the Montreal Action Plan was produced, COP15 in Copenhagen where an agreement to success Kyoto Protocol was unfortunately not realized and COP17 in Durban where the Green Climate Fund was created.

In 2015 COP21, also known as the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, will, for the first time in over 20 years of UN negotiations, aim to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C.

France will play a leading international role in hosting this seminal conference from 30 November 2015 - 11 December 2015. The COP21 will be one of the largest international conferences ever held in the country. The conference is expected to attract close to 150 Presidents, 50,000 participants including 25,000 official delegates from government, intergovernmental organizations, UN agencies, NGOs and civil society.

What are the Intellectual Property issues?

The Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Mrs. Christiana Figueres has announced that "human survival depends on our improvement of technology". In the coming decades, tens of trillions of US dollars will be required for developing a wide range of new technologies to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate changes. The past UN Framework Conventions on Climate Change adopted approaches that focus the innovation system on private funding and markets, and thus on the acquisition of patents at the front end of the coming innovation pipeline. The growing expansion of NPEs in fields outside electronics is becoming a major concern. This choice is debatable. It creates tensions for the patent system’s ability to assure fair and sustainable access at the back end of technology transfer for enabling speedier diffusion of green technologies worldwide. Other IP strategies need to be implemented ranging from patent pools to Access Benefit sharing to support and protect environmentally sound technologies which are central to addressing climate change.

COP 21 IP panel discussions

The French Patent Office (INPI) has invited Fabrice Mattei to run the two panel discussions on innovation strategies to mitigate climate changes as part of the COP 21. Highly regarded biodiversity law professor, Graham Dutfield, directors of the French, Korean and Moroccan Patent Offices and representatives from the private sector will be joining Fabrice.

Agenda and speaker of the panel discussions

Tuesday, 8 December 2015, Grand Palais, Paris

Panel discussion 1: Innovation with patents


  • Mr. Yves Lapierre, Director of French Patent Office (INPI)

  • Mr. CHOI Donggyou, Commissioner, Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO)

  • Mr. Thierry Sueur, President of the European Patent Attorneys Association (APEB) IP Director of Air Liquid

  • Mr. Alain Michelet President of French Patent and Trade Mark Agents (CNCPI)

Fabrice Mattei will be the moderator.

Panel discussion 2: Innovation without patents


  • Professor Graham Dutfield (University of Leeds, UK)

  • Mr. Adil Maliki Director of the Moroccan IP office

  • Fabrice Mattei

Mr. Jean Baptiste Mozziconacci, director of strategy at the French Patent Office (INPI) will be the moderator.

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