Dr Matthew Rimmer is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow, working on
Intellectual Property and Climate Change. He is an associate professor at the ANU College
of Law, and an associate director of the Australian Centre for Intellectual Property in
Agriculture (ACIPA). He holds a BA (Hons) and a University Medal in literature, and a LLB
(Hons) from the Australian National University. Rimmer received a PhD in law from the
University of New South Wales for his dissertation on The Pirate Bazaar: The Social Life
of Copyright Law. He is a member of the ANU Climate Change Institute. Rimmer has
published widely on copyright law and information technology, patent law and
biotechnology, access to medicines, clean technologies, and traditional knowledge. His
work is archived at SSRN Abstracts and Bepress Selected Works. 

Rimmer is the author of Digital Copyright and the Consumer Revolution: Hands off my iPod
(Edward Elgar, 2007). With a focus on recent US copyright law, the book charts the
consumer rebellion against the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act 1998 (US) and the
Digital Millennium Copyright Act 1998 (US). Rimmer explores the significance of key
judicial rulings and considers legal controversies over new technologies, such as the
iPod, TiVo, Sony Playstation II, Google Book Search, and peer-to-peer networks. The book
also highlights cultural developments, such as the emergence of digital sampling and
mash-ups, the construction of the BBC Creative Archive, and the evolution of the Creative
Commons. Rimmer has also participated in a number of policy debates over Film
Directors' copyright, the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement 2004, the
Copyright Amendment Act 2006 (Cth), the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement 2011, and the
Trans-Pacific Partnership. He has been an advocate for Fair IT Pricing in Australia. 

Rimmer is the author of Intellectual Property and Biotechnology: Biological Inventions
(Edward Elgar, 2008). This book documents and evaluates the dramatic expansion of
intellectual property law to accommodate various forms of biotechnology from
micro-organisms, plants, and animals to human genes and stem cells. It makes a unique
theoretical contribution to the controversial public debate over the commercialisation of
biological inventions. Rimmer also edited the thematic issue of Law in Context, entitled
Patent Law and Biological Inventions (Federation Press, 2006). Rimmer was also a chief
investigator in an Australian Research Council Discovery Project, "Gene Patents In
Australia: Options For Reform" (2003-2005), and an Australian Research Council
Linkage Grant, "The Protection of Botanical Inventions (2003). He is currently a
chief investigator in an Australian Research Council Discovery Project, “Promoting Plant
Innovation in Australia” (2009-2011). Rimmer has participated in inquiries into plant
breeders' rights, gene patents, and access to genetic resources. 

Rimmer is a co-editor of a collection on access to medicines entitled Incentives for
Global Public Health: Patent Law and Access to Essential Medicines (Cambridge University
Press, 2010), with Professor Kim Rubenstein and Professor Thomas Pogge. The work
considers the intersection between international law, public law, and intellectual
property law, and highlights a number of new policy alternatives – such as medical
innovation prizes, the Health Impact Fund, patent pools, open source drug discovery, and
the philanthropic work of the (Red) Campaign, the Gates Foundation, and the Clinton
Foundation. Rimmer is also a co-editor of Intellectual Property and Emerging
Technologies: The New Biology (Edward Elgar, 2012), with Alison McLennan. 

Rimmer is a researcher and commentator on the topic of intellectual property, public
health, and tobacco control. He has undertaken research on trade mark law and the plain
packaging of tobacco products, and given evidence to an Australian parliamentary inquiry
on the topic. 

Rimmer is the author of a monograph, Intellectual Property and Climate Change: Inventing
Clean Technologies (Edward Elgar, September 2011). This book charts the patent landscapes
and legal conflicts emerging in a range of fields of innovation – including renewable
forms of energy, such as solar power, wind power, and geothermal energy; as well as
biofuels, green chemistry, green vehicles, energy efficiency, and smart grids. As well as
reviewing key international treaties,this book provides a detailed analysis of current
trends in patent policy and administration in key nation states, and offers clear
recommendations for law reform. It considers such options as technology transfer,
compulsory licensing, public sector licensing, and patent pools; and analyses the
development of Climate Innovation Centres, the Eco-Patent Commons, and environmental
prizes, such as the L-Prize, the H-Prize, and the X-Prizes. Rimmer is currently working
on a manuscript, looking at green branding, trade mark law, and environmental activism. 

Rimmer has also a research interest in intellectual property and traditional knowledge.
He has written about the misappropriation of Indigenous art, the right of resale,
Indigenous performers’ rights, authenticity marks, biopiracy, and population genetics. 

Rimmer has supervised three students who have completed Higher Degree Research on the
topics, ‘Secret Business and Business Secrets: The Hindmarsh Island Affair, Information
Law, and the Public Sphere’ (2007); ‘Intellectual Property and Applied Philosophy’
(2010); and 'The Pharmacy of the Developing World: Indian Patent Law and Access to
Essential Medicines' (2012). He has also supervised fifty Honours students, three
Summer Research Scholars, and two graduate research unit Masters students. 

Dr Matthew Rimmer received the ANU Vice-Chancellor's Award for Public Policy and
Outreach at the annual Awards Ceremony on the 26 November 2013:
http://hr.anu.edu.au/career/staff-awards/public-policy-and-outreach 

Books

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Intellectual Property and Climate Change: Inventing Clean Technologies, Cheltenham (UK) and Northampton (Mass.): Edward Elgar. (2011)

'A historically grounded study on a cutting-edge topic, Intellectual Property and Climate Change has it...

 

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Intellectual Property and Biotechnology: Biological Inventions, Cheltenham, UK, and Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar. (2008)

"Dr Rimmer's book is a marvellous introduction to a crucial topic of our time. He...

 

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Digital Copyright and the Consumer Revolution: Hands off my iPod, Cheltenham, UK, and Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar. (2007)

‘Rimmer brings the tension between law and technology to life in this important and accessible...

 

The Pirate Bazaar: The Social Life of Copyright Law, Sydney: The Faculty of Law, The University of New South Wales. (2001)

This thesis provides a cultural history of Australian copyright law and related artistic controversies. It...

 

Edited Collections

Indigenous Intellectual Property: A Handbook of Contemporary Research (2014)

In light of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples 2007, this...

 

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Intellectual Property and Emerging Technologies: The New Biology (with Alison McLennan) (2012)

This unique and comprehensive collection investigates the challenges posed to intellectual property by recent paradigm...

 

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Incentives for Global Public Health: Patent Law and Access to Essential Medicines. (with Thomas Pogge and Kim Rubenstein), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (2010)

This portrait of the global debate over patent law and access to essential medicines focuses...

 

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Patent Law and Biological Inventions, Law in Context (2006)

In response to scientific breakthroughs in biotechnology, the development of new technologies, and the demands...

 

Contributions to Books

The High Court of Australia and the Marlboro Man: The Battle Over The Plain Packaging of Tobacco Products, Regulating Tobacco, Alcohol and Unhealthy Foods: The Legal Issues (2014)

In 2012, the High Court of Australia handed down a landmark decision on the plain...

 

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Trick or Treaty? The Australian Debate over the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), The Plurilateral Enforcement Agenda: The Genesis and Aftermath of ACTA (2014)

The secretive 2011Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement – known in short by the catchy acronym ACTA –...

 

Plain Packaging for the Pacific Rim: The Trans-Pacific Partnership and Tobacco Control, Trade Liberalisation and International Co-operation: A Legal Analysis of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (2013)

Big Tobacco has been engaged in a dark, shadowy plot and conspiracy to hijack the...

 

Patent-Busting: The Public Patent Foundation, Gene Patents, and the Seed Wars, The Intellectual Property and Food Project: From Rewarding Innovation and Creation to Feeding the World, Farnham (Surrey): Ashgate. (2013)

This chapter considers the Public Patent Foundation as a novel institution in the patent framework....

 

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Travelling Bones: The Repatriation of Indigenous Ancestral Remains, Biomapping Indigenous Peoples: Towards an Understanding of the Issues (2012)

In the album Journey, Archie Roach - the Australian Indigenous singer-songwriter hailing from Mooroopna in...

 

Articles

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The Empire of Cancer: Gene Patents and Cancer Voices, Journal of Law, Information, and Science (2013)

In his book, The Emperor of All Maladies, Siddhartha Mukherjee writes a history of cancer...

 

Who Owns Your Body? Patricia Piccinini and the Future of Bioethics, Journal of Law and Medicine (2013)

This article analyses some popular cultural representations of biotechnology, especially the artistic work of the...

 

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An Elegy for Greg Ham: Copyright Law, the Kookaburra case, and Remix Culture, Deakin Law Review (2012)

The ‘Kookaburra’ case was a tragic and controversial copyright dispute, highlighting the need for copyright...

 

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23andMe Inc.: Patent Law and Lifestyle Genetics, Journal of Law, Information, and Science (2012)

The venture, 23andMe Inc., raises a host of issues in respect of patent law, policy,...

 

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Patents for Humanity, The World Intellectual Property Organization WIPO Journal (2012)

This article evaluates two policy initiatives by the United States Government to address access to...

 

Case Notes

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Will the Trans-Pacific Partnership #TPP feed Consumers to the Wolves of Wall Street?, Crikey (2014)

In the wake of the global financial crisis, there’s been a push by policy-makers for...

 

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IPCC Makes Climate A Human Rights Issue (with Alexandra Phelan), New Matilda (2014)

Climate change is an issue for public health, law, poverty and even human survival, according...

 

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New Zealand, Plain Packaging, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, InfoJustice (2014)

The New Zealand Parliament is considering the adoption of plain packaging of tobacco products with...

 

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The High Price of Drug Patents: Australia, Patent Law, Pharmaceutical Drugs, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Equilibri, GESPAM (2014)

This week, the secrecy surrounding an independent Australian report on patent law and pharmaceutical drugs...

 

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Ireland, Plain Packaging, and the Olive Revolution, InfoJustice (2014)

A world leader in public health, Australia introduced plain packaging of tobacco products. Julia Gillard...

 

Policy Submissions

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Trojan Horse Clauses: Investor-State Dispute Settlement. A Submission to the Australian Parliament., Senate Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs Defence and Trade Legislation Committee (2014)

‘The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) proposes to freeze into a binding trade agreement many of the...

 

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The Plain Packaging of Tobacco Products: A Submission to the New Zealand Parliament (2014)

RECOMMENDATIONS

Recommendation 1 New Zealand should introduce the plain packaging of tobacco products in order...

 

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A Submission to the Australian Law Reform Commission on Copyright and the Digital Economy: IT Pricing (2013)

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This submission draws upon a number of pieces of research on copyright and...

 

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A Submission to the Australian Law Reform Commission on Copyright and the Digital Economy: Open Access (2013)

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This Submission is based upon work in progress, which has been presented at...

 

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A Submission to the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Affairs and Legal Policy on the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment Bill 2013 (Cth) (2013)

The amendments contained in the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment Bill 2013 (Cth) are designed to...

 

Book Reviews

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An Unlikely Climate Activist: A Review of Bill McKibben's Oil and Honey, New Matilda (2013)

The COP19 talks are underway in Warsaw. What led world leaders to take climate change...

 

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'Not all Rights Are Reserved; A Book Review of Reclaiming Fair Use: How to Put Balance Back in Copyright by Patricia Aufderheide and Peter Jaszi' (2012)

This lively book, Reclaiming Fair Use: How to Put Balance Back in Copyright, is designed...

 

The True History of Copyright, The Australian Experience 1905-2005; A Book Review, Australian Bar Review, Vol. 31 (2), p. 230-235. (2008)

In his book, True History of the Kelly Gang, the Australian novelist Peter Carey retells...