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His Honour Judge Birss

In his Herchel Smith Lecture, HHJ Birss QC examined harmonization in Europe and internationally. The lecture highlights the increasing need for measures to aid such harmonization, including the need to facilitate the sharing of information – a prerequisite to understanding approaches in other countries. It goes on to consider how to read judgments from other countries, in particular the persuasive weight to be attached to them, and highlighted the need for everyone to become students of other legal systems. The lecture goes on to discuss what can be learnt from the existing unitary rights and the risks for forum shopping that already exist as well as those that might arise with the adoption of the unitary patent agreement.