The EPO as patent law‐maker in Europe

Aurora Plomer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
89 Downloads (Pure)


This article examines the role of the European Patent Organisation (EPO) in the European patent system. It shows how the delineation of European patent law has been handed over by governments to an autonomous, quasi‐judicial technocracy at the EPO and reveals how the process of hollowing out economic and political factors in the grant of patents is assisted by the deference of national courts to the EPO and the creation of the Unified Patent Court. It suggests that these developments pose a threat to democratic governance of the patent system in Europe because the delineation of intellectual property rights has inherent economic and political dimensions which are not reducible to technical legal issues of interpretation or technocratic expertise.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-74
Number of pages18
JournalEuropean Law Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Feb 2019


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