Special topics in intellectual property

Special topics in intellectual property

Andrea Twiss-Brooks (Ed) 

New York, US: OUP USA 2011 | 128pp | ?95 (HB) 

ISBN 9780841225947 

Reviewed by Jonathan Wills

Book cover - Special topics in intellectual property


This slim volume is published as a follow-on to an American Chemical Society intellectual property symposium held in late 2009. It is intended to be a resource for chemists looking to develop their careers in the intellectual property industry. 

The book includes a series of concise chapters focusing on copyright and trademarks, as well as related topics such as information technology and learning resources for those looking to find out more. In keeping with its aim of being an informative introduction to the intellectual property field, the book also contains interviews with chemists who are currently working in this area. 

However, the book is unlikely to appeal to most chemists. Overall it comes across as rather disjointed, with no common thread linking the topics. Whilst it is not intended to give a detailed introduction into each area of intellectual property, the lack of depth will limit its usefulness. A chemist who is keen to learn about any of the areas discussed is unlikely to be satisfied with the short chapters. 

For a publication intending to educate chemists in aspects of legal protection, the book inexplicably lacks a chapter focusing on patents, the intellectual property that chemists are most likely to deal with on a regular basis. 

Unsurprisingly, given that the book is an ACS publication, the majority of the chapters focus on intellectual property in the US. For example, some chapters discuss US law and legal decisions, others the education and career paths of those working in the field. 

A chemist looking to learn more about intellectual property, and a possible career in this area, will undoubtedly find more useful information elsewhere, not least from the websites of various patent offices and from a careers service. 

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