Associated Projects are projects that potentially make a transformative contribution to CREATe’s central themes. They have been adopted under a formal procedure. Investigators and researchers on these projects have full access to CREATe’s activities and events.
Intellectual Property and Criminalisation: An Historical Perspective
Elena Cooper, CREATe Postdoctoral Researcher in Copyright Law, History and Policy
Duration: January 1, 2017 to December 31, 2023
Intellectual property (‘IP’) is thought to be the domain of civil rather than criminal law. Recent years, however, have seen an increase in the role of the criminal law in combatting
infringement: new criminal offences have been created, existing penalties have been increased and the importance of criminal law to IP enforcement has been recognised at an EU and international
level. The importance of criminal law to IP enforcement is assumed to be a new development; a response to a perceived unprecedented problem of piracy and counterfeiting relating to organized
crime, exacerbated by on-line crime. Yet, the criminalisation of IP infringement in fact has a much longer history. The project will provide the first in-depth study of the history of the
criminalisation of IP infringement, starting in the late 18th/early 19th century (the time of the emergence of the notion of criminal law as a discrete body of law) and ending in the present day.
It will encompass a number of detailed case-studies, providing a close account of criminalisation in different contexts and at different points in time, in the various branches to form modern IP,
including the relationship of these branches of law to the general criminal law. In doing so, it will facilitate a re-thinking of the history of modern IP, as well as engaging with the challenges
raised by the criminalisation of IP infringement today.
Reconstructing Copyright’s Economic Rights (Microsoft research grant)
- Professor P. Bernt Hugenholtz, University of Amsterdam (IViR) (PI)
- Assoc. Prof. Joost Poort, University of Amsterdam (IViR)
- Professor Martin Kretschmer, University of Glasgow (CREATe)
Duration: 2015 to 2017
- Prof. Alain Strowel, Prof. Stefan Bechtold, Prof. Séverine Dusollier, Prof. Ansgar Ohly, Dr João Pedro Quintais, Prof. Ole-Andreas Rognstad
The historical evolution of copyright has led to a growing disconnect between the legal definitions of economic rights and the business and technological realities they regulate, eroding copyright’s normative content and distorting the scope of its economic rights. This major trans-European research project funded by a Microsoft research grant re-examines the core economic rights protected under EU copyright law, with the aim of bringing these rights more in line with economic and technological realities.
Pursuing an interdisciplinary approach combining economic and legal methods, nine of Europe’s most respected copyright scholars and economists analysed a variety of models for reconstructing copyright’s economic rights, focusing on five potentially copyright-relevant acts that lie at the borders of exclusive rights:
- digital resale;
- private copying;
- hyperlinking and embedding;
- cable retransmission; and
- text and data mining.
An edited volume from the project was published in 2018 by Kluwer: Copyright Reconstructed: Rethinking Copyright’s Economic Rights in a Time of Highly Dynamic Technological and Economic Change
EnDOW (“Enhancing access to 20th Century cultural heritage through Distributed Orphan Works clearance”)
- Professor Maurizio Borghi, Bournemouth University (CIPPM)
- Professor Lucie Guibault, University of Amsterdam (IViR)
- Professor Lilla Montagnani, Bocconi University (ASK)
- Dr. Kris Erickson, University of Glasgow (CREATe)
- Aura Bertoni, Bocconi University (ASK)
- Giacomo Tagiuri, Bocconi University (ASK)
- Laura Zoboli, Bocconi University (ASK)
- Maarten Zeinstra, External Advisor (Kennisland)
- Margherita Bordignon, Bocconi University (ASK)
- Matej Gera, Bournemouth University (CIPPM)
- Simone Schroff, University of Amsterdam (IViR)
- Professor Ronan Deazley, Queen’s University Belfast
EnDOW (“Enhancing access to 20th Century cultural heritage through Distributed Orphan Works clearance”) is a Heritage Plus funded project led by Professor Maurizio Borghi at Bournemouth University. The three-year study (2015-2018) brings together a diverse research team from law, sociology, cultural heritage, communication, and computer science to address the challenge of diligent search for copyright clearance in cultural heritage institutions (CHIs). The project is developing a crowdsourcing solution to diligent search for use by CHIs and other organisations. For more information about the EnDOW platform and research, visit the project page at http://diligentsearch.eu
Building Better Business Models
Grant Reference: EP/K039695/1
Duration: 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2016
With Investigators from London School of Economics and University of Sussex
This research project is exploring how firms are applying and engaging with new digital technologies to become more efficient, profitable and dynamic. While there is considerable understanding about how digital technologies allow firms to create value, there is much less understanding of how firms can use digital economy to sense what consumers and society needs and monetize that value and turn it into financial returns for investors, entrepreneurs and shareholders. By exploring how digital technology is transforming the three elements that make up a business model – how firms understand customers’ needs, how they create value for customers, and how they capture and monetize this value – this project will generate new understanding about how digital technology can be commercialised more effectively. This knowledge will help firms in the UK generate more jobs, more economic growth and improved services to firms and the general public.
The University of Glasgow investigators are in particular contributing to this empirical project by conducting research on cultural and creative industry sectors that use digital technology in products or services and have created innovative business models in response to the digital question. The team is currently creating a bank of case studies capturing the key essence of business models of exemplar firms in areas such as book publishing, broadcasting, music publishing, videogames, 3D printing, etc. A project microsite (with research results from Glasgow investigators) will be launched shortly.
Communicating Copyright: An Exploration of Copyright Discourses in the Digital Age
- Dr Bethany Klein, University of Leeds
- Dr Lee Edwards, University of Leeds
- Dr David Lee, University of Leeds
- Dr Giles Moss, University of Leeds
- Dr Fiona Philip, University of Leeds
Illegal downloading among ordinary media consumers has cast copyright as a central component of contemporary conversations about and activities around the creative industries. This ESRC-funded project, which ran from June 2011 for 18 months, considered modern copyright debates as involving a range of implicit and explicit justifications communicated by government, industry, artists and users. The research illustrated how discourse plays a strategic role in promoting the interests of particular social groups and how justifications frequently draw on more general principles that transcend specific interests and extend the scope for contestation about the role and nature of copyright in the digital age.
More details about the project are available from the corresponding ESRC website.
Valuing the Public Domain
- Professor Martin Kretschmer, University of Glasgow
- Dr Kris Erickson, University of Glasgow
- Dr Dinusha Mendis, Bournemouth University
- Dr Fabian Homberg, Bournemouth University
- Professor Paul Heald, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
This knowledge exchange scheme brings together academics (from the disciplines of law, media & communication studies, management and economics), policy makers from the Intellectual Property Office (an executive agency of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills) and media businesses (in particular transmedia SMEs) to generate and disseminate new knowledge about the use of public domain works.
The high level aims of the scheme are to contribute to a better understanding of both direct and indirect value creation for UK firms and the wider economy, and thus lead to – better policy making, and more effective use of public domain materials by UK media companies.
The project is funded by the ESRC. It commenced in September 2013 and runs until 2015. More details can be found on the project resource page.
Historical Analysis of the Role of Copyright in Music Publishing
- Professor Ruth Towse, Bournemouth University
- Professor Maurizio Borghi, Bournemouth University
- Dr Jose Bellido, Birkbeck University of London
- Professor Fiona MacMillan, Birkbeck University of London
- Hyojung Soh (Research Assistant), University of Bournemouth
This project, which runs from 1st January 2014 for two years, is also part of the AHRC Copyright Satellites scheme. The research focuses on the ways in which the music publishing industry has adapted to successive technological and institutional changes, especially to copyright law, by adopting different legal, economic, infrastructural and marketing strategies. The project will analyse the historical and economic factors that explain the adaptability of this sector and the extent to which they can be used in order to understand the future of creative industries in the digital age.
Appraising Potential Legal Responses to Threats to the Production of News in the Digital Environment
- Dr Richard Danbury, University of Cambridge
Speaking to Cardiff University’s web site, Professor Hargreaves said, “This exciting research will appraise the potential legal responses to the threats facing news production in the digital environment, as such our project will address three dimensions.
“Firstly we will explore and map the range of business models being utilised such as advertising, freemium, metred, public funding and citizen journalism. Secondly we will consider the methods of assessing these changes not just on the economy but on the society and the impact of these shifts on the ‘quality’ of journalism and the level of access enjoyed by different sections of the public to news, analysis and debate.
“Finally we will consider what useful role policy-makers play in this field. If concerns over the quality of journalism are real, they go to the heart of a well-functioning democratic system.”
The research, funded under the AHRC’s Copyright Satellites scheme runs from January 2014 for 24 months and will produce articles and deliver workshops based upon findings during that time concluding with a conference in 2016.
More details are available from the University of Cambridge CIPIL website.