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AN HISTORIC EVENT: JOINT JUDICIAL CONFERENCE IN TOKYO, JAPAN

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An historic event occurred on October 26 and 27, 2011 at the Hotel Okura in Tokyo, Japan, when the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the Japan Intellectual Property High Court sat together en banc at  the Joint Judicial Conference on Japan and United States Intellectual Property Rights. 

The historic panel consisted of Chief Judge Randall R. Rader, and Circuit Judges Arthur J. Gajarsa, Richard Linn, Timothy B. Dyk, Sharon Prost, and Kimberly Moore from the Federal Circuit, and  Chief Judge Tetsuhiro Nakano and Presiding Judges Toshiaki Iimura, Shuhei Shiotsuki, Takaomi Takizawa, Tamotsu Shoji, and Yasuhito Inoue from the Japan Intellectual Property High Court. 

This first-ever meeting of the two courts sitting en banc at the Joint Judicial Conference was witnessed by more than 800 judges, lawyers, and corporate counsels from the United States and Japan. 

The en banc meeting of judges from the two courts was one of a number of  sessions held over three days led by American and Japanese moderators and speakers who discussed intellectual property issues of mutual interests with panelists and audience members.

The Conference is noteworthy because it is the first time that national courts from two nations have sat in an en banc session and  answered questions from a moderator and the audience on a wide range of intellectual property issues. 

The joint session also is significant because it is the first time judges from the Japan Intellectual High Property Court have met in a conference setting with members of the local Japanese bar associations or with Japanese lawyers who practice before the Court.

A detailed account of the conference is available here.