Monday lunch on patents, software, innovation with Kenn Cukier of The Economist

In case you are around 02138 and do not have lunch-plans on Monday, the Berkman Center is hosting an informal, brown-bag (i.e., B-Y-O this time, only because of my last-minute-ness on this score; apologies!) lunch with Kenn Cukier, a former fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and well-respected author and journalist, on the topic of software patents and the future of innovation on the Internet. As you may know, Mr. Cukier has written a piece in The Economist on this topic that ran in the Oct. 22 – 28 edition, in which he argues — more subtly than this, of course — that, despite growing pains, the changes in the patent regime in the past few decades are positive developments toward the creation of a more efficient market for ideas. The online version (reg. req’d.) of his story is here. There’s also an interview with Kenn here. Kenn tells me he is ready for some resistance from our crowd (he is sure to get it).

The session will take place from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m. this Monday, November 7, 2005, at the Berkman Center, which is located at Baker House, 1587 Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge on the northwest side of the Harvard Law School campus. I will not be there, but will call in very briefly from New York at the outset of the session to say “hello” and to introduce Kenn. Long-time Berkman former fellow Jim Moore, who has been thinking a great deal about software patents, will be on-hand to lead the session in person, as well as Talha Syed, the fellow directing our Revson Foundation-funded research on the impact of patents on teaching and learning. If you can make it, please respond to

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