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3D Printing and Its Impact on Intellectual Property


The European Patent Office (EPO) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) are jointly organizing from 13 to 16 July an online conference on one of the most dynamic technologies of the Third Industrial Revolution: additive manufacturing (AM). Often referred to as 3D printing, this is fast-moving technology is reshaping traditional manufacturing.

3D printing allows us to make products that were previously considered unmakeable: prosthetics, artificial coral reefs, aircraft components and even 3D-printed homes. These products can be customized, logistics costs can be cut, and manufacturing cycles can be sped up. The new technology is already ubiquitous and is widely used in various sectors such as fashion, medicine, automotive and aerospace. The opportunities are immense. But what challenges does it pose, particularly when it comes to intellectual property (IP)? 3D printing impacts various areas of IP protection, including copyright, patents and design rights. Is the intellectual property system ready to face these challenges?

During the conference, experts – ranging from policymakers, entrepreneurs and investors to inventors and lawyers specializing in intellectual property - will share their experience and vision on the development prospects of this field. It promises to be a lively and engaging event for researchers, IP professionals and representatives of the business environment, including SMEs.

On the first day of the event, on 13 July, the EPO will also launch a new study entitled “Patents and Additive Manufacturing - Trends in 3D Printing Technologies”.

The event is free and you can choose to attend one, several or all of the conference sessions, subject to prior registration.

More details about the event, including the conference schedule and registration link, are available at: