LES Global Technology Impact Forum (GTIF)
2 May 2018 | San Diego, USA

GTIF 2018

Registration Fees

$50 - Session 1-3
$50 - Optional Session 4: Luncheon with Guest Speaker


The GTIF 2018 will comprise a half-day meeting will comprise an initial keynote talk, focused on managing IP issues for socially-beneficial business projects in less developed countries, two main panels on the topics of

  1. the changing forms of funding for "double-bottom" line business projects; and,
  2. the changing IP management practices that these new forms of funding require, and a closing lunch. The meeting will conclude with a guest speaker, who will consider the business potential of socially-responsible business models and social venturing.    
8:30 Registration
9.00 - 9.05 Introduction and Welcome
9.05 - 9.35

Session 1: Keynote Speaker

William J. Merritt, President and CEO, InterDigital

9.35 – 10.35 Session 2: Financing Technology Development (Moderated Panel Discussion)
  • Why has impact investing" emerged in the last 10 years?
  • What "market failures" exist and how can these be addressed?
  • Are philanthropic groups successfully adopting VC practices, and to what extent are social and business benefits compatible?
  • How common are experiences across sectors?

Stan Flemming, Founding Managing Partner, Forward Ventures
Greg McKee, President and CEO, CONNECT
Lonnie Rosenwald, Chief Counsel, Invention Science and Development, Intellectual Ventures

Mark Wilson, Strategic Biotech

10.35-11.10 Coffee Break
11.10 - 12.10 Session 3: Managing IP in "Double Bottom Line" Projects (Moderated Panel Discussion)

As many bodies move from grant-giving to investing, how are IP terms changing? How do social development projects differ from commercial ones in terms of specific IP provisions? How can university licensing professionals best interact with impact investing groups and social VCs?

Albert Keyack, EPO Attaché to the United States, European Patent Office (EPO)
Mr. Edward Kwakwa, Senior Director, Department for Traditional Knowledge and Global Challenges, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
Additional Speakers Coming Soon!

Jennifer Brant, Executive Director, Innovation Insights

12.30- 2.00 Session 4: Lunch with a Guest Speaker

Kerry Faul, Head, National IP Management Office (NIPMO), South Africa (Invited)

  • The role of NIPMO in South Africa
  • Establishing technology transfer infrastructure
  • Challenges and successes in developing socially-beneficial technologies for business purposes
2:00 Close of Programme


William J. Merritt, President and CEO, InterDigital
William J. MerrittWilliam J. Merritt has been President and Chief Executive Officer of InterDigital and a member of the Board of Directors of InterDigital since May 2005. Mr. Merritt has played a key role in managing InterDigital's intellectual property assets and overseeing the growth of its patent licensing business. Mr. Merritt served as General Patent Counsel of InterDigital from July 2001 to May 2005 and also served as President of InterDigital Technology Corporation, a patent licensing subsidiary, from July 2001 to January 2008. Previously, Mr. Merritt served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of InterDigital. Before joining InterDigital in 1996, Mr. Merritt served as Assistant General Counsel with the Long Island Lighting Company. Earlier on, Mr. Merritt concentrated his engineering efforts with Public Service Electric and Gas Company and Stone & Webster. Since 2014, Mr. Merritt is a member of the board of directors of a privately owned Shared Spectrum Company, a leading innovator of dynamic spectrum access and wireless spectrum intelligence technology.

Mr. Merritt earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a J.D. from Temple University. Mr. Merritt is admitted to practice law in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the State of New York and before the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

GTIF Preview

Prior Meeting

GTIF 2015

Linked InTwitter