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Stina Teilmann-Lock

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Stina Teilmann-Lock

Design, utility model and patent law offer means of protecting appearances and inventions that make up valuable parts of Creative Industries products. Common to designs, utility model and patents is that they are types of rights that typically require registration. Generally, design rights apply to the ‘appearance’ of designs, including the shape, patterns, lines, colours, contours and structure of a product. Patents apply to inventions – products or processes that offer new technical solutions to problems – that are novel and have inventive step. Utility models apply to minor inventions that are novel but without inventive step. The same item may have, for example, its appearance protected as a design and its technical function protected by a patent. The legal basis for protection exists on the national and on the international level. As with all types of intellectual property right designs, utility models and patents grant an exclusive right to commercial use.

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Stina Teilmann-Lock

A cornerstone of European design law is the ‘Design Approach’, which introduced a neutral concept of design, implying that particular aesthetic qualities of designs are not a requirement for protection. In this chapter the design historical contexts of design law are traced: the examples of Italian and Danish design history are used to illustrate that there are significant links between the evolution of modern design in Europe and the way that the Design Approach laid out the conceptual framework of European design protection. Importantly, the Italian and the Danish design traditions represent important trends in the development of European industrial design with an understanding of design as a kind of added value and as integral to the process of making industrial products. This notion of design is a lens through which we may look at the role that European design legislation may play for value creation in saturated markets.