Celebrating 50 Years of the European Patent Convention
On 5 October 2023, the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the European Patent Convention (EPC) marked a key milestone in the journey to support innovation and European integration. The Convention, signed on 5 October 1973, created the European Patent Organisation and its implementing authority, the European Patent Office (EPO). Moreover, it laid the foundations for the European patent system, which has fostered innovation and economic growth across Europe for the last five decades.
Check out the videos below for highlights of the major international event that took place across several EPO sites, as well as recordings of individual sessions and the entire event.
Get a glimpse of the programme, and the most emotional moments!
The event kicked off with an opening ceremony that paid tribute to everyone who has contributed to the accomplishments of the past 50 years and the foundations of a European patent system that aims to foster shared progress and prosperity for generations to come. Here are the opening speeches:
Statements and messages
Message from António Guterres, United Nations Secretary General
The message from the United Nations Secretary General was read by moderator Fernando Tiberini.
A word from the Heads of Offices of the member states of the European Patent Organisation
Here’s a question we asked the member states: Which one word would you use to describe what it means to be part of this community?
Are you curious about what they said? Take a look!
Statements of the international partners of the European Patent Office
Award ceremony for the Kids’ collaborative art competition
The winners of our Kids’ collaborative art competition received their prizes in recognition of their artworks conveying hopes and dreams for the future of innovation. This was a particularly emotional moment. The awards were handed over by King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands; Áslaug Arna Sigurbjörnsdóttir, Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation of Iceland; Hem Vanndy, Minister of Industry, Science, Technology and Innovation of Cambodia; and Professor Wolfgang Heckl, Director General of the Deutsches Museum, Munich:
The innovation game
One of the highlights of the morning sessions was the innovation game, which was dedicated to the work of our staff and inspirational inventors.
The afternoon featured roundtables with expert speakers exploring how inclusive innovation in fields such as health and space technology are contributing to a more sustainable world.
Innovation for everyone’s well-being
A snapshot of how advances in medical and digital technologies, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology are transforming the future of healthcare.
Moderator: Helena Domingues, Patent Examiner in Immunology
Claudiu Hidas, Chief Executive Officer, munevo AG
Jens Zehetner, Franchise Director, Merck, Sharp & Dome
Jérôme Galon, Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale and European Inventor Award winner 2019
Madiha Derouazi, Member of the Board of Directors, LiTao Biotech SA and European Inventor Award winner 2022
We have lift-off: How space technologies change life on Earth
Explore the latest exciting developments in space technology, from the world’s largest telescopes to artificial intelligence for space missions.
Moderator: Julian Mihé, Patent Examiner in Gas Turbines
Xavier Barcons, Director, European Southern Observatory
Ilaria Cinelli, Space Healthcare Expert and Institutional Business Developer
Laurent Lestarquit, GNSS Signal Expert, Centre National D’Etudes Spatiales and European Inventor Award winner 2017
Anna Gregorio, Associate Professor, University of Trieste, Department of Physics
Technologies for a sustainable future
Unique insights into the latest innovation and policy initiatives for a net-zero future, a healthier climate and more sustainable patterns of production.
Moderator: Manuel Walther, Patent Examiner in Medical Injection & Infusion
Simon Bennett, Energy Technology Analyst, International Energy Agency
Christoph Gürtler, Head of Catalysis Program, Covestro / RWTH Aachen University and European Inventor Award finalist 2021
Jennifer Rupp, Professor of Chemistry and Solid-state Electrolytes, Technical University Munich
Catia Bastioli, Chief Executive Officer, Novamont, and European Inventor Award finalist 2007
As digital technologies become increasingly woven into the fabric of society, from our communication systems, industries and economies to entire smart cities, how will they transform the future next?
Moderator: Georgia Tseliou, Patent Examiner in Wireless and Data Networks
Hamano Koichi, Commissioner, Japan Patent Office
Claudia Tapia, President, 4iP Council and Director IPR Policy and Legal Academic Research, Ericsson
Sophie Wilson, Broadcom and European Inventor Award finalist 2013
Bastian Best, European Patent Attorney and AI Expert
Carles Puente, Fractus Founder, Professor IPR Management, UPC and European Inventor Award Finalist 2014