The kick-off event gathered some 14 delegates from the Caribbean region (Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago and Dominican Republic) providing networking opportunities between the different Universities, national Intellectual Property Offices, ministries and international organisations, as well as a space to discuss the specific project implementation strategies and goals. The delegates from the partner institutions and associates worked together during 2 days in developing the workplan and implementation plan of the first project year. The main first activities consist of a comparative analysis of policy frameworks and a benchmarking IPR & KT regulations and practices in higher education and research organization.
Following the kick-off meeting at the University of Alicante, the IPICA group carried out a study visit on 6th March to the headquarters of the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) in Alicante. OHIM is the European Union agency responsible for managing two important vehicles for the protection of creativity and innovation – the Community trademark and the registered Community design. During the study visit several experts presented on-line resources to be used in the IPICA project and for capacity building actions. The OHIM Academy, a learning and knowledge-sharing hub, was also presented.
On the 7th March the IPICA group visited the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (OEPM) in Madrid. The programme for the study visit included several presentations on the OEPM initiatives with the Caribbean and Latin American countries and with Spanish Universities and Research Centres. Information systems and IP searching tools were also presented.