Home » Contests and Competitions

Contests and Competitions

Canada's IP Writing Challenge 2024

Sponsored by Intellectual Property Institute of Canada and IP Osgoode, Canada’s IP Writing Challenge 2023 will award one winning entry from each of three separate author categories:

  1. Law student author category (LLB, JD, BCL, and LLL students)
  2. Graduate student author category (LLM, SJD and PhD students)
  3. Professional author category (legal and business professionals who have been practising seven years or less, including patent agents and trademark agents).

The winner from each of category will be eligible for:

  1. A prize of $1,000 (CDN);
  2. Publication on the IP Osgoode website;
  3. Consideration for publication in the Canadian Intellectual Property Review and/or the Intellectual Property Journal.

Challenge Rules

1. Eligibility

The IP Challenge is open to any Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident that is:

  • Category 1: A full-time law student who is pursuing an LLB/JD, BCL, LLL (or equivalent degree), articling or clerking in Canada during the 2023–2024 academic year.
  • Category 2: A graduate student pursuing an LLM, SJD or PhD (or equivalent degree).
  • Category 3: A legal or business professional who has been practicing seven years or less, including as a patent or trademark agent.

2. Topics

Categories 1 and 2

Entries in categories 1 and 2 must develop a thesis of importance in an emerging area of intellectual property law from a Canadian, comparative or international perspective. Topics can be from within the broad categories of intellectual property law including patents, trademarks, industrial design and copyright.

A selection of potential areas to research and write on include, but are in no way limited to, the following: Digital media and freelance writing; Social networks, intellectual property and privacy; Geographical indicators (GIs) and international law; IP reform; Commercialization of IP; Patenting drugs and the pharmaceutical industry; Crime, counterfeiting and piracy; Network neutrality; The battle in branding for the Web; Patentability of business methods; Traditional knowledge; IP and developing countries; Copyright fair dealing and fair use.

IPIC and IP Osgoode encourage a range of perspectives and policy approaches.

Category 3

Entries in category 3 must critique the decision by any court or tribunal of an intellectual property law case issued after January 1, 2023, from a Canadian, comparative or international perspective.

3. Submission


Entries will be accepted by e-mail only to: iposgoode@osgoode.yorku.ca  (Subject line: Canada’s IP Writing Challenge).

Please attach your entry in Word or PDF format.

Entries must be an original work and not previously published in order to be eligible.  No more than two joint authors are permitted.  Each author’s original contribution to the entry must be at least 40% of the whole paper.

Entries must be received no later than 5:00 pm (ET) on Monday, July 1, 2024.

Do not indicate your name, contact information, affiliation, law school or any other personally identifying information within the text of your entry (including any identification marks in footnotes).

On a separate cover sheet, indicate your name, affiliation, law school (if applicable), year/program of study (if applicable), course/professor (if applicable) address, telephone number, e-mail address, the title of your paper and word count.

If the entry is co-authored, the cover sheet must contain a statement that each author’s individual original contribution is no less than 40% of the whole paper.

The Challenge Sponsors will use this information for the purpose of contacting the winner. Please ensure that contact information will be accurate until October 31, 2024.

Submission Format

All entries should contain footnotes and not endnotes. Entries should be in Word or PDF format, using Times New Roman 12 point font and double-spaced. References should conform to the Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation, 9th ed (Toronto: Thomson Carswell, 2018), a.k.a. the McGill Guide. Submissions may be made in either English or French.

Word Limit

Category 1 and 2 entries must be no longer than 7,500 typed words, including footnotes.

Category 3 entries should be 3,000 to 5,000 typed words, including footnotes.

4. Assessment

Submissions will be reviewed based on the following criteria:

  • Organization
  • Clarity
  • Originality, persuasiveness and creativity of argument
  • Depth and variety of research (including the social, political, economic and ethical/moral context)
  • Consideration of various policy alternatives to respond to IP challenges
  • Analysis of the effect (both domestically and internationally) on various stakeholders

All entries will be reviewed by a panel of judges selected by the Challenge Sponsors. The Challenge Sponsors reserve the right to not declare a winner in any or all of the challenge categories at their sole discretion.

The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Entrants shall not contact the judges for direct feedback on the judging process or results.

5. Announcement

The Challenge Sponsors will contact the winners of this writing challenge by October 31, 2024. The winner will be announced and published on the IP Osgoode website and/or the IPIC website.

[1] The Challenge Sponsors reserve the right to not declare a winning entry in any or all of the challenge categories at their sole discretion. Only one winning entry will be chosen in each category.

[2] In the event where the winning entry is co-authored and said co-authorship is in accordance with the rules, one prize of $1,000 (CDN) will be split evenly between the co-authors and awarded.