Helsinki IP Summit 2021

6/2021 23.11.2021

The Helsinki IP Summit was organized for the second time on the 10th and 11th of November as a hybrid event, with the program taking place in the meeting facilities of hotel Paasitorni in Helsinki and online, with the outstanding help of Roast Creative. The event, hosted by the IPR University Center, brought together over a hundred of intellectual property law professionals from Finland and abroad to hear about the latest IPR phenomena and the most recent success stories in the field.

Hybrid day 1: Brands, licenses, artificial intelligence and start-ups

On Wednesday the 10th participants were free to choose whether to join the event through the streaming platform at their home offices or present in Helsinki. The day was kicked off with a brief opening speech held by the co-directors of IPR University Center, Juha Vesala and Tuomas Mylly, who finished by introducing the first key-note speakers of the day, namely Ilkka Rahnasto from Marconi and Eeva Hakoranta from InterDigital.


After the introductory session, seminar participants had the opportunity to choose between a wide range of different, interesting presentations provided in three different conference room. The themes ranged from the building of successful public service brands, as presented by leading IP-lawyers Joonas Koskivirta and Head of Brand Janne Saarinen of the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE, to the different IPR Aspects on Technology Licensing, as discussed by Suvi Julin and Arttu Ahava from law firm Berggren.

In the second set of seminars the audience could listen to presenters such as Rainer Hilli and Mikael Segercrantz from Roschier discussing the current status of the UPC. Furthermore, Anna Haapanen from Dittmar & Indrenius and Kaisa Olkkonen, Chair of the Board of the Finnish IPR Strategy -committee, discussed the current situation of the Finnish IPR Strategy. The presentation was of particular importance as the strategy is likely to guide Finnish IP-priorities in the future. Simultaneously, during this second part of the day, the speeches held in lecture hall Sirkus mainly focused on topics relating to artificial intelligence, under the guidance of lawyers representing law firms Laine IP, Lexia Attorneys and Papula-Nevinpat.

Another example of the interesting and energetic presentations held during the second part of the day, was the lecture given by Sakari Arvela, CEO and co-founder of law firm IPRally, who discussed the stories typically underlying start-up companies. Arvela also spoke passionately about the ways in which he had managed to speedily grow IPRally into a company of 24 employees in just a few years.

For the purpose of this article Arvela kindly provided us with some of his insights regarding the conference overall. “The first day of the Helsinki IP Summit was a pleasant day spent taking in new and interesting information regarding intellectual property law, allowing my mind and thoughts to race and develop new ideas”, Arvela said, after which he humorously pointed out: “I also didn’t mind the deals I managed to make after my presentation!”. He recollects: “It was an honor to participate in bringing in perspectives from the startup-world only hours after Finnish startup-company Wolt announced its gigantic merger worth 7 billion!”, continuing: “In my presentation I discussed the ways in which a startup’s story is essentially shaped based on its first clients. Furthermore, the story is also developed by its surrounding ecosystem. For IPRally, the hosting institution IPR University Center and this very IP Summit is an essential part of that very environment”.


After a final coffee break it was time for the last three presentations. Joose Kilpimaa from Laine IP provided his audience with an enthusiastic and interesting preview into unusual trademarks through a few sample cases, and were later accompanied by Kirsi Ekström from Telia Finland, who provided a client perspective to the matter in question. In addition to this, inspiring presentations were also held by Hanna-Maija Elo and Emilia Hodge from Properta Attorneys, as well as by Kaj Häggman and Mika Vuontisjärvi from OP Financial Group.

Networking with IPR professionals throughout the world

Besides being an outstanding occasion for IP professional to hear enlightening, interesting, and rewarding lectures, Helsinki IP Summit also provides a unique opportunity to meet IPR professionals throughout the world and to make new connections and build professional networks. In few events are there as many people with distinct IP-knowledge in one place. Simultaneously, from the point of view of a student the event provides a fantastic opportunity to not only hear from people on top of the field, but also to discuss, network, learn and get inspired by real-life discussions with these professionals – an opportunity otherwise rarely experienced in the course of ordinary studies.

From an organizing perspective, one of the most rewarding parts of the conference was hearing the joyful chattering that filled the lobby throughout each coffee break, the lunch and the Networking Night organized in collaboration with IP Summit’s partnering company, law firm Berggren. According to one of the main organizers, the head of marketing and communications at the IPR University Center Auri Vainio, who has spent years working to further the causes of the Finnish intellectual property law community, it was fantastic to realize how much the IP-field has grown during the past decade and how pleasant and supportive the atmosphere within the field has grown to become. In the words of Sakari Arvela from IPRally: “Helsinki IP Summit was a very refreshing event, in particular in these times. It was great to meet so many old and new acquaintances all in one place!”.


Online day 2: Diving into the world of IP -law from home

The second day of Helsinki IP Summit was held fully online, allowing participants to continue diving deep into the world of IP-law in the course of many intriguing and versatile presentations from their respective home offices.

The day commenced with an excellent presentation by Viveca Still, representative of the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture, discussing the very current matter of the DSM-directive in Finland and Europe with regards to the future of copyright laws. Still took the point of the view of the legislator, discussing the process of implementation of the EU copyright directive into national laws – a task far from simple. Following Still’s fascinating presentation, next in turn were Jani Kaulo and Maria Puronvarsi from Kaulo & Partners, discussing the interesting role of the private individuals in trademark infringement cases.

From the framework of individuals, discussions eventually moved on to more universal topics, as the following presentation included a panel discussion on the importance of intellectual property rights, in particular patents, in the COVID-19 pandemic. The esteemed panel consisted of Dhanay Cadillo Chandler from Turku University, Duncan Matthews from the Queen Mary Intellectual Property Research Institute in London, and Linda Norrgård from law firm Papula-Nevinpat. The discussion clearly showed the challenging and complex nature of the topic, and proved, that there are wide-ranging opinions on the topic within the field and that numerous different solutions are possible. Besides the current pandemic also potential future health crises and the role of IPR within them were covered.

After a brief lunch break the event continued with a final set of innovative presentations. In his inspiring presentation Antti Innanen from Dot. Legal Oy introduced Summit-participants to novel ways of IPR-thinking, arguing that by applying the ideas of design into IPR-law the field could be made more approachable to a wider range of different clients. From the world of legal design, a smooth transfer was made into the sphere of fashion law. Irene Calboli from Texas A&M University School of Law presented her thoughts on the ways IPR can influence the development of a more sustainable world of fashion and encourage consumers to make more environmentally conscious fashion choices.

In the final presentations of the day focus was once again turned to very specifically IP-related legal matters. Under the guidance of Kolster’s Hannes Kankaanpää the value of case-by-case assessment of patents was highlighted and discussed, followed by an intriguing final presentation discussing the development of the Finnish IPR-service sector through the span of 1990-2020 as influenced by three global megatrends, namely globalization, Europeanization, and digitalization. The final presentation, providing an academic perspective, was given by IP-researchers Jussi Heikkilä and Mirva Peltoniemi representing University of Jyväskylä.

Helsinki IP Summit: Finally back together again

Helsinki IP Summit turned out to be all the things it promised, providing its participants with the unique opportunity to learn from nationally and internationally acknowledged IPR-experts, and allowing participants to get inspired by new ideas and innovations within the field of IP-law. The successful and inspiring event was filled with fantastic opportunities to meet professionals and other IPR-enthusiasts and provided a wonderful first in-place opportunity to rekindle and network present, face-to-face in what hopefully can be held to be the early aftermaths of the COVID-19 pandemic.


A warm and big thank you to all participants, speakers and partners! Iso ja lämmin kiitos kaikille osallistujille, puhujille ja yhteistyökumppaneille!

Aiheet: Muut