View All Academic Strengths

Intellectual Property

Feature Story

Center for the Study of the Public Domain

What could have entered the public domain on Jan. 1, 2014?

Current U.S. law extends copyright for 70 years after the date of the author’s death, and corporate “works-for-hire” are copyrighted for 95 years after publication. Prior to the 1976 Copyright Act, the maximum copyright term was 56 years. Under those laws, works published in 1957 would enter the public domain on January 1, 2014. Under current copyright law, we’ll have to wait until 2053. 

Read more

News Highlights
Internet Regulation in 2020

Center for Innovation Policy logoThe Center for Innovation Policy will host a symposium, Internet Regulation in 2020, to discuss the future of regulation of broadband networks and what that may mean for innovators, policymakers, and users. The discussion will address questions such as what can and should the Internet be in 2020, what is the appropriate regulatory approach to take in the next few years, and how should it be implemented.

Read more

  • Arti K. Rai portrait
    Elvin R. Latty Professor of Law

    Arti Rai, Elvin R. Latty Professor of Law and co-Director, Duke Law Center for Innovation Policy, is an internationally recognized expert in intellectual property (IP) law, administrative law, and health policy. Rai has also taught at Harvard, Yale, and the University of Pennsylvania law schools.  Her research on IP law and policy in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and software has been funded by NIH, the Kauffman Foundation, and the Woodrow Wilson Center. She has published over 50 articles, essays, and book chapters on IP law, administrative law, and health policy.

  • Jennifer Jenkins discusses the ambiguous battle over the Public Domain

    Public Domain Day, which falls on January 1st, is intended to be a celebration of copyright expiration, a day when notable works enter the public domain. In 2014, Public Domain Day in Canada saw the writings of Robert Frost, W.E.B. Du Bois, C.S. Lewis, Sylvia Plath, and Aldous Huxley became public works, free for anyone to use and build upon. However, because of copyright extensions passed by the U.S. Congress, no published works entered the U.S. public domain in 2014, and nothing will until 2019. In this video, Jennifer Jenkins, Director of Duke Law's Center for the Study of the Public Domain, discusses her paper "In Ambiguous Battle: The Promise (And Pathos) of Public Domain Day, 2014." Jenkins offers an analysis of the issues surrounding existing copyright laws and discusses ongoing efforts to bolster open access to information.

    Related paper: Jennifer Jenkins, In Ambiguous Battle: The Promise (And Pathos) Of Public Domain Day, 2014, 12 Duke Law & Technology Review 1-24 (2013). Available at:

  • Center for Innovation Policy: New Approaches & Incentives in Drug Development | Panel 1

    Duke Law's Center for Innovation Policy held an inaugural conference to address "New Approaches & Incentives in Drug Development" on Nov. 22, 2013.

    The first panel discussed "The Current Incentive Landscape." Speakers included Arti Rai, Duke Law School, Stuart Benjamin, Duke Law School, Michael Carrier, Rutgers Law School, Bhaven Sampat, Columbia School of Public Health, and Bret Dickey, executive vice president at Compass Lexecon.

    The conference, held at the National Academy of Sciences building in Washington D.C., was sponsored by Duke Law, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, and One Mind for Research.

Browse all Duke Law video