Queen Mary
It is possible to argue that the establishment of intellectual property academic institutes in Strasbourg and in Munich played an important role in channelling and crystallising the desire for a local educational centre in London, triggering the creation of the first Chair of Intellectual Property at Queen Mary University, a chair that was first occupied by James Lahore in the early 1980s.
Further references:
James Lahore “University Teaching in Intellectual Property” 8 (3) European Intellectual Property Review, 1986, pp. 67-69.
Malcolm Langley “The Weston Papers: intellectual property law and the origins of the Centre for Commercial Law Studies at Queen Mary, University of London” 1 (1) Queen Mary Journal of Intellectual Property, 2011, pp. 2-20.
Jose Bellido “The Constitution of Intellectual Property as an Academic Subject” 37 (3) Legal Studies, 2017, pp. 369–390.
Sir Roy Goode: Law started in Queen Mary in 1955, when my predecessor as Dean, Professor Roger Crane, came from Kings College and established the law faculty. He was the one who appointed me – the only man in England, I think, who would have had the nerve to appoint to a Chair somebody who’d not only never taught but had never been to university. But he did.
Facilitator: And that was in the Mile End Road.
Sir Roy Goode: Yes. The Department of Law of the School of Law, is still there, whilst the Centre for Commercial Law Studies later moved, first, to Charterhouse Square then to its present location in Lincoln’s Inn Fields.
Facilitator: And the Centre for Commercial Law Studies began later than the 1970s?
Sir Roy Goode: Yes. In 1980. The establishment of the Herchel Smith Chair in October 1979 was the trigger for the foundation of the Centre of Commercial Law Studies in the following year I thought that we could bring the Herchel Smith under the umbrella of the Centre and then we could get started. The origin was all rather funny. We started this centre but it existed on paper and never having founded a centre before I was wondering how to give this reality. The college notepaper was dreadful so I thought, the best thing was to get modern notepaper designed at a cost of £200, which we didn’t have. But somehow we got the money. We had the notepaper designed with a more modern appearance. The next thing that happened was, the British Council was phoning up, saying, “We’d like to provide scholarships for people who could attend the Centre courses.” The only trouble was that at that time we didn’t have any courses and we didn’t have any students! Both came fairly soon afterwards. So it was a very funny situation. But there we were. Then we got the centre launched by the Lord Chancellor, Lord Hailsham, with Herchel Smith hmself as the principal guest. Then I thought: what is the Lord Chancellor going to open? The physical manifestation of the Centre was only a name on my door. So I arranged with the maintenance department that underneath “Faculty of Laws” on the multi-storey building they put “Centre for Commercial Law Studies.” Problem solved!
Facilitator: Was there any negotiation with Herchel Smith to get the Herchel Smith funding or were the other universities interested?
Sir Roy Goode: Yes, certainly. Mind you this was mainly done through Wally Weston and a few of his colleagues at the Chartered Institute of Patents. If I go back to the beginning of this, we were told in 1978 that CIPA wanted to celebrate its centenary by establishing a Chair in what was then called Industrial Property Law. And they had about £100,000 available. So they went to see the Academic Registrar, PF Vowles, at the University of London. He said, “Well, £100,000 is not going to go very far. If you make it £400,000, you could be in business.” And they said “Yes, we think we have a donor who might be willing to provide that”, That was Herchel Smith. So then they were told by the University, ”Well, best thing to do is to make approaches to the colleges.”, particularly that time there was Queen Mary, University College, LSE, and Imperial had come in to at some stage, but they didn’t have a law faculty. And so Weston and others from CIPA went around the different law schools to invite applications to found a Chair. Queen Mary apparently was the first one. And the very interesting thing, was that this Chair would have been considered tailor-made for Professor Bill Cornish. Cornish was at LSE, he was the leading figure in England in Intellectual Property Law, and he would have been the obvious candidate, but at the time he was in Australia on sabbatical leave.
CIPA then went on to King’s, University College and LSE and said they would like to establish a Chair to run a diploma in Industrial Property Law. What I was told, and I don’t know whether this is true, is that the LSE Law Faculty was not very keen on a Chair to run a professional course and said that perhaps could be looked at by the Continuing Education Department. I don’t know whether this was true, this was a story that got back to me, but they did eventually come back into the picture, when Cornish was still abroad. It’s fair to say although there were expressions of interest from the other Colleges, it was a qualified interest because I think they weren’t particularly keen on the idea of simply running a professional diploma in Industrial Property Law or Intellectual Property Law as it became. Then they came to Queen Mary. What we did was to turn the whole thing upside down. I remember our discussion with Weston and others when I said to them, “Look, of course, we can establish a Chair and the Professor can get a diploma set up, but presumably you want this Chair to have not only a national, but an international standing and it wouldn’t have that if the main role of the Professor was seen to be to establish and run a professional training course. What we would envisage is that while that would be done there would also be advanced teaching and research, with courses on the subject in the London LLM and doctoral students undertaking advanced research for the PhD, together with publications, conferences and so on.” Well, they seemed to get quite excited by that idea. We had a meeting at Queen Mary, chaired by the Vice-Principal and the result of it was, that they said,” OK, if we manage to get the money, we are going to recommend that it come to you”, which is what happened. So I think actually it was just a question of using a bit of imagination.
Facilitator: And timing. I think this happened soon after European Patent Convention came into force.
Sir Roy Goode: That’s right. And it coincided with the enactment of the UK Patent Act 1977. Dr Mary Vitoria, a member of the Law Faculty, organised a conference on the Patent Act, 1977, that led to Sweet & Maxwell approaching us to say would we agree to co-publish a book of the papers of the conference. And the Managing Director, a chap called Evans, a very nice man, said, “OK, we’re willing to offer you £500” I said, £“500 doesn’t seem very exciting. If you made it £2000 we might be in business.” Of course, his jaw dropped. However, he later agreed and we established a very good relationship thereafter.
Facilitator: You were saying you imagined students and new programmes. How did you have that vision because as the field was emerging, I think it was very risky for you, to consider that intellectual property could become –as it has become now, more attractive.
Sir Roy Goode: Yes, well I’ve always been of the view that you have to be prepared to take controlled risks, and we did. We got very bold with publication and conferences and things like that.
Facilitator: There was another (conference) on the Berne Convention.
Sir Roy Goode: Yes, we had another conference not on this subject. Unfortunately, there were two other conferences on the same subject and it was Easter Week. We lost £7,000. Can you imagine losing £7000 way back then? I went to see the Bursar. Well, he said, “You can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs!” He was a good, down to earth chap. And actually we did a publication deal with a Belgian publisher and the result of it was that we cleared the whole debt and got £1,000 on top. You have to be prepared to take risks – which we were doing all the time, controlled risks. It’s fair to say we were a rather anarchic department. I don’t think the college had ever experienced a department like this one. We did all sorts of things that other departments didn’t do. And we took risks. Once they saw we knew what we were doing, it was fine but [there was an] initial period of hesitancy.
Facilitator: Was Clive Schmitthoff involved at that time?
Sir Roy Goode: Yes. We had him. The Chairman was Mr. Justice Carr, who then went to Court of Appeal. The Vice-Chairman was Professor Gower, a well-known company lawyer and then I got Clive Schmitthoff to join him. Clive was then about 82 or 83, a dedicated teacher. And Clive said, “I’m not very good at coming to meetings but I’m quite good with ideas.” He was amazing. He said to me, “We should put on a LLM course in international trade law.” He designed it and we both taught it. And of course the result was amazing. The course was advertised late and we were allocated a seminar room holding some 25 students. But when it became known that Clive would be co-teaching it some 90 students turned up. Luckily there was an available lecture room.
Facilitator: And was he involved in the establishment of the Intellectual Property Unit?
Sir Roy Goode: He had nothing to do with Intellectual Property. He was in commercial law, arbitration, and international trade. He joined Jim Gower, the famous company lawyer, as Co-Vice Chairman. For Intellectual Property Law, we had a number of people because when things were set up we said there wouldn’t just be the Herchel Smith Professor, we would have other people. There was Yvonne Smyth, Alison Firth, Jeremy Phillips and others.e. Over the years the team built up, together with a small specialist library, which Gerald Dworkin helped develop when he succeeded Jim Lahore.
Facilitator: How was the appointment of Jim Lahore made?
Roy Goode: We decided that Jim Lahore was the one we wanted. He was in Australia at that time. So the decision having been taken, I phoned him up to offer the Chair. Now for some reason I got it into my head that Australia was 10 hours behind us, whereas, it was the other way round. So I phoned Jim Lahore at what turned out to be 2 o’ clock in the morning (Australian time) and he had just taken a sleeping pill to get to sleep. So he was feeling very muzzy. I said, “Jim, I’d like to offer you a Chair.” He said, I’ve got of plenty of chairs already. I said, No, the Chair of Intellectual Property Law.” Anyway he came. His was the first Chair within the CCLS although it had been established the year before the CCLS came into existence and as I have said it was brought within the Centre. It was followed by the Sir John Lubbock chair of Banking Law. Following the establishment of the two chairs the centre went from strength to strength.
Then we decided to get a launch of the Centre for Commercial Law Studies. So I wrote to Lord Hailsham, then the Lord Chancellor. This was within a few months of our starting. We still didn’t have any courses. [I wrote to him inviting himto come and open the Centre. Somewhat to my surprise I got a letter back saying that he would. Well, at that time all the Centre had was a label above my door saying “Centre for Commercial Law Studies”. I thought, when they open the centre, people are going to say, “Where is it?” So I went along to the College maintenance department and said, “On the laws outside of the Laws building, would you put Centre for Commercial Law Studies just beneath faculty of laws?”
So when everybody came along, they could see a building on several floors, which I trust impressed them. But as regards Centre accommodation there was actually nothing there, it was all a con trick! The Lord Chancellor came. We thought we’d worked out everything but we hadn’t realized that he would bring a lady in waiting with his dog. Her role was to look after the dog. The dog had to be fed – in the Principal’s office! Then the ceremony took place on the third floor and the Lord Chancellor was ushered into the lift. The lift was playing up, of course. The engineer said, “Well, we can get it to the second floor and then winch the Lord Chancellor up to the third floor.” But Hailsham said, I have no confidence in this lift!” So with his two sticks, he stalked up the three flights of stairs. And it was a good gathering, Herchel Smith of course was there to open the CCLS, which was very nice for us and we got some good press coverage as well. I had to introduce him – he was a chemist by training – and I had to arrange to have a tutorial with the Professor of Chemistry on the pronunciation of the chemical terms used!

So that was how the Centre began The Intellectual Property Law Unit went from strength to strength, because they had the Herchel Smith money supporting the Chair. He followed it up over the years with money for senior research fellowships and other posts.

Swe Ng, my then secretary who later became the Centre’s administrator, made it her business to keep in touch with Herchel Smith to let him know how things were going. He obviously appreciated that because when he died he left £6,500,000 – the largest donation the college had ever had – to the Intellectual Property Law Unit. And of course it’s been flourishing ever since.
Facilitator: Was it the Max Planck Institute in Germany a comparison or a model to the Unit? My understanding was that the unit also emerged as a way to be influence policy making.
Roy Goode: Yes that was the idea. As part of this we established an annual Herchel Smith lecture. The idea was to invite people who were in positions of influence. It might be academics, it might be people in government or the EU, who were involved in shaping European intellectual property law. So right from the beginning, the Centre was set up with a view to having a comparative and international approach and collaboration with other law schools and research institutes and with the practising professon here and abroad.
Facilitator: Was a research-driven centre or a combination of teaching and research from the very beginning?
Roy Goode: The role perceived for the centre from the beginning was advanced research and teaching of postgraduates. We did not take undergraduates. Postgraduate teaching, research, publication and as I say, linked with people abroad in Europe and elsewhere. And that’s always been the philosophy of the Centre – to look outward. We didn’t take undergraduates then and they still don’t take undergraduates now. That’s dealt with by the Department of Law. Now of course, it is incredible what’s been achieved. The Centre has, I believe, some 50 full-time academic staff, something like 20 part timers and visiting scholars and a substantial support staff, with a huge range of activity. And much of that is due to the drive and imagination of the present Director, Professor Spyros Maniatis, who’s done a great job. Indeed, all my, successors have contributed significantly to the Centre’s development.
Facilitator: Was there any other candidate with Jim Lahore, for that Chair that was seen, that the obvious one.
Roy Goode: I don’t recall. There may well have been other people. There were certainly other good intellectual property lawyers. I think he was seen at the time as the strongest candidate. He was there for few years. Then he left and then Gerald Dworkin came along, who was also very good. So the Intellectual Property Law Unit just built up from strength to strength. Now of course, they’ve got a whole institute within the CCLS.
Facilitator: The intellectual property law library also started there.
Roy Goode: Yes, it did.
Facilitator: It is located now in the IALS, the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies.
Roy Goode: It used to be next to Gerald Dworkin’s room on the ground floor of the Laws building at Mile End Road. But now the IALS is a better place for it and that’s also what’s housing the Weston Papers, I imagine.
Facilitator: And the unit was in terms of management (under the umbrella of) the CCLS?
Roy Goode: Yes. We established a series of units and I believed in giving the Head of the Unit a pretty free hand. We appointed him because he was obviously good in his field and I let him get on with it and develop the thing how he wanted. There were certain central services provided by the CCLS – administration and so on, we imposed a levy on each of the units. Subject to that levy, they could keep within the unit anything they earned so there was an incentive to bring in revenue. That was helped by a deal that I negotiated with the College. It took me nine months to do it. I said, “As we found all the money for Chairs, can I take it that the fee income will go to the CCLS?” The Bursar said, “No way. Contrary to the whole college system.” I said: “Well, I don’t want to interfere with established doctrine. Can we just say that we will be given a department grant equal to the fee income received?” “No”, he said, “But I’ll tell you what, I’ll give you 10%.” I said, “No George, I think you’ve got that the wrong way around. We’ll take 90 and the College gets 10.” So he came down to 80, I said 10, he came down to 70 and I said 10, he came down to 60 and I allowed myself to be levered up to 50, and in the end, after the intervention of the Principal, we got a deal. We got 80, and the College got 20. They still did very well, out of that 20%. And we kept 80, which meant that we could then invest the money in new appointments which meant we could put on new courses which made the whole thing more attractive. So student numbers increased and it all worked very well. They have a different approach now, but it worked for the time and it worked very well. We were able to expand and we were basically self-financed, which was what it was set up to do.
Facilitator: And did the Law Department have any stake in this at that time?
Roy Goode: It has probably changed now but when we started, there was a lot of discussion about the Law faculty and whether it would take resources away. But I established a principle that we would contribute to the Department’s undergraduate Teaching. We did not have undergraduate students but we were contributing to the teaching of undergraduates. They were getting the equivalent of two professors, contributing to teaching. So they became very happy, and there’s been a very good relationship on the whole. They were a bit concerned at one stage. But it all settled down and now there is a good relationship with the Department and a very good relationship with the College. The Centre is regarded as something of a jewel in the crown at Queen Mary and the Intellectual Property Law Institute is very strong because it’s that the most well-endowed. But the College has always been extremely supportive, which has contributed much to the Centre’s success.
Facilitator: How did it help the profile of Queen Mary to become at the same level as UCL? Did it help to improve the profile of Queen Mary as a College of the University?
Roy Goode: I think so, yes.
Facilitator: Do you feel that to some extent before that it was closer to being a polytechnic?
Roy Goode: No. I got there in October 1971, and it was always much more. Roger Crane, who himself had a first class mind, was anxious to secure bright scholars, including young scholars, in every department. It wasn’t like a polytechnic. It had its origins going all the way back and had been a school of the university for a long time and it was highly regarded. It didn’t have the same profile as the other colleges, being much newer and much smaller. Now of course, it has vastly expanded and had long enjoyed parity with the other colleges. I certainly think that the establishment of the CCLS has helped to raise the profile of the College. But there are many good departments within Queen Mary. It’s done exceedingly well.
Facilitator: And do you remember Mary Vitoria?
Roy Goode: Yes, Mary Vitoria actually started as scientist. She had been a senior lecturer in chemistry before she decided to take up Law, and if you are in the Intellectual Property area, the two things go nicely together. She ended up as a senior lecturer at Queen Mary, then went into practice. And she left because her practice was developing. But she had her academic origins both in chemistry and in law.
Facilitator: And then Jeremy Philips?
Roy Goode: Yes, Jeremy was a very lively character, and for a while, with Sweet & Maxwell, we had published a commercial law bulletin to which Jeremy made a major contribution. We thought we’d publish unpublished law reports but we found at that time that we couldn’t get our hands on them very well. Jeremy however, seemed to get all the Intellectual Property things, so a lot of that was brought into that was brought into the Commercial Law Bulletin.
Facilitator: And Alison Firth as well?
Roy Goode: Yes, Alsion, she was there for some time.
Facilitator: And do you remember the degrees? How did they evolve? The first one was the certificate or the diploma.
Roy Goode: Yes, that’s right. I didn’t get too much involved, but I’ve got some copies of annual reports going back to the 1980s. I know that alongside the LLM, a diploma was established as well as a course leading to a cerificate.
Facilitator: I was asking you before about recruitment because there were not many people who were experts in Intellectual Property, for instance. There were not many academics doing Intellectual Property so it would have been quite difficult to find them.
Roy Goode: Well, we managed all right because having already got our specialist Professor, there were younger people coming up like Yvonne Smyth, Alison Firth and Jeremy Phillips who were very capable. So I don’t recall having too much difficulty in filling the lower posts. Moreover, we always had strong support from CIPA, which had played a leading role in the establishment of the Chair and the subsequent activities of the Intellectual Property Law Unit.
Facilitator: And then the appointment of Gerald Dworkin.
Roy Goode: Well, for this particular post we didn’t advertise. We learned that Gerald Dworkin was interested and he was undeniably the best for the job. Now I had a great regard for Jeremy (Phillips), but he was much younger. So we simply offered it to Gerald and he said yes. Generally speaking we would advertise but there were times when you say, what is the point? When you’ve got somebody who is really very good, what is the point of going out to see if there’s somebody even better who might exist in the outside world? By the time you’ve done that, you’ve lost the person you wanted to get. So every now and then you need to take a decision. It worked out very well. He was very good.
Facilitator: And in terms of students, do you remember? Did numbers grow?
Roy Goode: They grew, yes. We started off with a relatively few. I don’t remember the numbers but they increased very year.
Facilitator: I saw some of the reports you were mentioning with publications and events. It was quite dynamic at the time in terms of also the annual lecture and then……–
Roy Goode: We did a lot of things, we had a sizable continuing education program, so we used to have evening lectures on a whole variety things – Intellectual Property and Commercial Law, Insolvency and so on. We then started a summer school, which eventually developed into a three-week programme attended by practitioners from all over the world. It was divided into three major subject areas and they could participate in any or all of them. That ran for several years, leading practitioners joining the CCLS academics in teaching on the course.. We also held an annual weekend conference jointly the Chartered Institute of Patent Agents at Highgate House in Creaton, Northamptonshire. You’ve probably seen a lot of leaflets about what we were doing, including a whole range of activity in the filed of intellectual property.
Facilitator: And regarding the intercollegiate program, do you remember when it took place? Or if some of the courses became part of the University of London intercollegiate LLM?
Roy Goode: The LLM was always intercollegiate until a few years ago. Professor Crane was always of the view that eventually the LLM, like the LLB, would become collegiate as the Law schools grew. I think that happened much later than he’d envisaged. LSE was the first one to decide it wanted to do its own thing. But until then all the LLM courses were intercollegiate. A student had to register with a college and take at least two courses with the college of registration but the remaining two courses could be taken at any college offering them. It was a great system while it lasted.
Facilitator: I think it was very successful.
Roy Goode: It was very good. Terrific range. About 150 subjects, at one time. But then it got too big to handle. With the international trade course, it grew to about 120 students. Very difficult to handle. Then Professor Guest at Kings told me that he was planning to put on a parallel course on international trade for which I was very thankful. Between the two of us we had 180, about 90 [students] each. Extraordinary. Each college was developing its own particular group of things. So, I’m not quite sure when it happened, but there came a time when the LLM became college-based, which in some ways is a pity, but in other ways it was inevitable.
Queen Mary Buena