Law & Technology

Welcome to the beating heart of Start-Up Nation!  Do you have a memory stick?  Flash memory was invented a few buildings away from our law school, at the Faculty of Engineering at TAU.  Do you use online banking?  Your bank probably uses a firewall invented in Israel.  Does your car have MobilEye installed?  That too, was developed nearby, in Jerusalem.  There is a reason why Google, Facebook, Amazon, IBM, Intel, HP and other global hi-tech companies have established research centers in Israel.  We are in the midst of an information revolution, with Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, and a mobile revolution converging.  Our Law & Technology track focuses on the interface of law and technology.  The track offers courses on Intellectual Property (IP), cyber and information law, and other related issues.

To complete your specialization in Law & Technology track, you must take at least 14-15 credits of the LL.M.’s 32 required credits, from courses within the Law & Technology track, but you are more than welcome to take as many courses as you see fit – and of course, that fit your schedule.  You can focus on IP or on Information Law, or mix both.  You can also choose to take courses from other tracks, in addition to general elective courses.

The professors and courses refer to the 2021-2022 academic year -courses are subject to change every year. 

 

Information Technology Law

Professor Niva Elkin Koren, Dr. Tamar Kricheli-Katz, & Dr. Uri Hachohen - Tel Aviv University

The purpose of the workshop is to explore the legal and policy implications of technology. The workshop will invite leading scholars to present their work-in-progress on various topics at the intersection of law and technology. Students will have an opportunity to discuss the papers directly with the paper presenters, and to comment on the papers in writing and during class.

 

US Trademark and Unfair Competition Law

Professor Stacey Dogan - Boston University School of Law

This course will examine the precepts of trademark and unfair competition law in the United States. We will investigate issues of ownership, protectability, and infringement in the context of words, symbols, slogans, product design and trade dress. The course also will handle related issues, depending on class interest, such as: trademark's common law roots, false and comparative advertising, parody, the right of publicity, the First Amendment, a comparison of how copyright and trademark treat 'functional' designs, the influence of misappropriation law and fears of free riding, and the challenge of applying trademark laws in the Internet context.

 

Introduction to Intellectual Property

Adv. Tony Greenman & Adv. Sarit Erez

Intellectual property is a key driver of the modern economy. The course will introduce the student to the theoretical basis and the legal foundations of intellectual property protection. We will examine the fundamentals of the laws of the traditional forms of intellectual property: copyright and related rights, patents, designs, trademarks and trade secrets. We will explore the subject matter, scope and term of protection, as well as questions of ownership and infringement. We will also discuss the balancing of IP rights with the public interest, such as the right of free speech and the free flow of information, and on the influence of advances in technology on that balance. Additionally, we will discuss the international regimes of protection and different approaches to the subject matter in various jurisdictions

 

International Intellectual Property Law

Prof. Amir Khoury - Tel Aviv University

While intellectual property is registered and protected on the national level there is a deep connection between national laws and international norms that exist with multiple intellectual property related conventions and agreements. In this course I shall share with you the story behind these agreements and the international organizations that have created them. In addition, I shall share with you ideas for the read ahead in the ever evolving world of international intellectual property regulation.

 

US Free Speech Law and Digital Platform Regulation

Prof. Ellen P. Goodman - Rutgers Law School

This course will explore various topics in emerging US information policy involving freedom of expression, press protections and subsidies, digital platform regulation, AI regulation, and privacy. Students will acquire basic knowledge about the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the political economy of U.S. legislation and regulation (including interest group pressures and the complicated politics of digital information flows), and the interaction between various legal interventions (e.g., U.S state and federal and European). Students will be expected to prepare for and participate in class discussion.  

 

Licensing of Intellectual Property

Adv. David Mirchin - Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal

The focus will be practical rather than theoretical, and the course will address real-world business and legal scenarios faced by technology companies. The purpose of the course is to familiarize students with a wide range of licensing issues and ways to address divergent interests. We will cover in-depth licensing of software, content, trademarks and patents, as well as open source software and creative commons. We will review the purpose of various key terms in licensing agreements, the interests of each party, and a variety of fallback and alternative solutions which could serve your client and "make the deal happen." Students will also learn about various forms of agreement related to intellectual property licenses, such as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) agreements, software maintenance agreements, Service Level Agreements, and software escrow agreements.

 

Start-Up Law

Dr. Ayal Shenhav & Adv. Gal Hoffman - GKH Law Office

Israel is known as "Start Up Nation". During the course Start Up Law we will review the Israeli Start Up Eco System and the major legal and financial events of a start up from formation until exit.

The following topics will be discussed: 

  1. Israeli Start Up Eco-System – how Israel became "Startup Nation" (key policy decisions)
  2. Founder Agreements
  3. Incorporation of the company - Key corporate and tax aspects
  4. Venture Capital Funds- Structure and operations
  5. Venture Capital Funds – Investment Transactions
  6. Raising funds through Crowd Funding Platforms
  7. Commercialization of Technology – Licensing Agreements, Distribution Agreements, Software as a Service ("SAAS") and more.
  8. Employment Law Issues for Start Ups (Non-Compete, Employee Inventions)
  9. Stock Option Plans.
  10. M&A Transactions
  11. The IPO process
  12. Government Support and Incentives for Start Ups – The Israeli Innovation Authority.

 

Law & Information Technology

Prof. Niva Elkin Koren - TAU

Information technology is affecting every aspect of our lives, transforming work, trade, communities, politics and governance. The law is called upon to respond to these changes, by applying old doctrines to the new information environment. At the same time, however, courts and legislators are also playing a key role in shaping technological innovation, business models, social relations and political structures. This seminar explores the complex relationship between law and information technology. It offers an in-depth exploration of some of the challenges to law in the digital era, emphasizing regulatory options and policy considerations. The study of law in the digital environment further offers an opportunity to explore new types of governance, using digital platforms, Artificial Intelligence and data, and to re-examine some premises regarding the law and how it operates.

 

International Intellectual Property Law

Prof. Ruth L. Okediji – Harvard Law School

This course will cover fundamental principles of international IP law with an emphasis on comparative approaches to scope of protection, limitations and exceptions, and dispute settlement. Students will study key provisions of leading major treaties, emphasizing the implementation and enforcement of the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) and IP chapters in regional trade agreements.  The course will cover access to medicines and other global challenges (access to culture, climate change, and rights of indigenous peoples) closely associated with the international IP system.

 

Digital Copyrights

Prof. Niva Elkin-Koren – Tel Aviv University

Digital technology is affecting every aspect of our lives, transforming work, trade, communities, politics and governance. Copyright law is called upon to respond to these challenges, by applying old doctrines to the new information environment.  The law is among the many forces which are shaping the digital ecosystem, affecting technological innovation, business models, social relations and political structures. Copyright law shapes access to knowledge, affecting our ability to keep things private, to learn, to share ideas, to use and reuse works, to generate original works, to compete, collaborate and innovate. This course will demonstrate the interplay between law and digital technology. We will explore the challenges to law in the digital era and discuss contemporary controversies arising from digital distribution: the rise of the information society, the data industry, User-Generated Content, mass collaboration and the sharing economy.

 

Technological Disruption and the Law

Dr. Uri Hacohen - Tel Aviv University

Technological developments in the fields of artificial intelligence, bioengineering, and nanotechnology are transforming society. Technology companies—Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Apple—overtook traditional manufacturing titans of the industrial revolution era (such as General Motors) as the largest and most influential corporations; startups (such as Uber and Airbnb), collaborative creativity initiatives (such as Wikipedia), and emerging technologies (such as Tesla's autonomous vehicles) have upset established markets and displaced business. Such technological disruptions are only expected to increase and with far-reaching implications for society --- from the consolidation of information and political power, creative freedom, discrimination in labor markets, criminal justice, military capability, wealth distribution, to the very nature of free will and human autonomy. This course will explore the social challenges of technological disruption and its legal implications. Students will lead a class discussion on one topic and will write a short comment on a topic of their choosing. 

 

Critical reflections on computational law

Prof. Mireille Hildebrandt and Dr. Laurence Diver - Vrije Universiteit Brussel

This course will engage with both practical and theoretical inquiry into the deployment of AI in legal practice (data-driven law) and the transcription of legal norms into computer code (code-driven law). The objectives will be to sensitize law students to the assumptions and methodological constraints of computer science, to learn how to ask the right questions when assessing ‘legal tech’, and to develop acuity with regard to how computational law may affect human rights and the rule of law.

 

The History and Philosophy of Internet Hacking

Professor Scott J. Shapiro - Yale Law School

This course attempts to answer three questions: 1) Why is the Internet Insecure? 2) How do hackers exploit it? 3) What do we do about it? While we will explain the technology behind basic hacking techniques, we will also explore the social, legal and philosophical causes of internet insecurity. 

 

**These are the courses that are being offered during the 2021-2022 academic year. Courses are subject, and likely, to change year to year. Applicants will be sent a final course list once it is available.

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