Students of international intellectual property law (henceforth IIP law), may approach the topic from a practical perspective, or a theoretical perspective.

Some information is relevant to both perspectives, such as a basic understanding of the U.S. government, foreign national and international institutions involved.

However, theory oriented IIP law courses tend to focus more on international and regional law making processes, transnational jurisprudence and techniques for resolving cross-border disputes. Seminar paper topics will likely address issues such as: international economic regulations, international regime theories, development studies and third world perspectives.

Practical IIP courses tend to focus on the practice of IIP law in an international arena. Students will want to know what intellectual property protections are available and how to protect the intellectual property rights of clients.

This introductory guide is meant to provide students with a basic overview of the IIP law resources available online and at the UC Hastings Library.
Searching for Books

Finding IIP Law Books at Hastings

If you can find a few good books covering your topic, it can make your research much easier. Hastings has a good collection of books on IIP law. Use the Hastings Catalog to find books on your topic and check the Course Reserve list.

Here is a sample search which locates most of the books in the Hastings library covering IIP law. The following subject searches may be useful, but this is not an exhaustive list.

You can also create your own Advanced searches by combining more than one search term in more than one search field. Advanced search example, d:(Intellectual property (International law)) and (Geographical Indications).

Publications by a particular Author can also be isolated, eg. Author: World Intellectual Property Organization. Try also, keyword IIC Studies (series).

Finding Books with a Section on IIP Law

  • Sometimes books on general Intellectual Property law, or on specific types of intellectual property, have a chapter on International aspects. These types of books can be found by doing an advanced search for a general subject such as Copyright law and for the keyword (not subject term) International for example, d:(copyright) and (international)

Browsing for Books

  • If you find a book that looks interesting, and you are not on campus, click on the call number to browse titles on the shelf nearby. Of course, if you are on campus, browsing the shelves is a great way to find relevant books. Many IIP Law books are on the 5th floor around K1401.

Borrow Books Through Inter-Library loan

  • For a wider selection of available books, search to see if other libraries have books you can borrow through Inter-Library Loan --- Books . If the book you want is not in the Hastings Library, or you would like to locate other books on your topic, use FirstSearch , a database containing information about books from most of the libraries in the English-speaking world. Search the WorldCat database to find book; click on the ILL icon at the top of the page to request the book.
Searching for Articles and Legal Analysis

Subscription Databases: Lexis-Nexis, Westlaw, HeinOnline, BNA Intellectual Property Library

The Hastings Law Library subscribes to a number of Internet-accessible resources that may be useful in your research. All of our online resources are listed here. You can access all of them on campus. Most of them also allow remote access. If you are not on campus, and you click on the database, you will be directed to this screen. To use the database off-campus, enter your name (as indicated on your Hastings ID) and your ID barcode number.

Sometimes law review articles can be one of the best places to find current research on your topic. The sources above can be used to find journal articles. Although there is a lot of overlap on and Westlaw Full-Text Law Reviews , you will some unique articles by searching both databases. [This search will cover most of the law review articles written since the mid-1990s. If you have a citation to a law review article that is not on Westlaw or Lexis (and is older than the last year or two), you will probably be able to print a PDF version of the article from HeinOnline .]

IIP Law Sources in Subscription Databases


Lexis has 2 GATT databases, found at:

International Law > Find Treaties & International Agreements

  • GATT - final text of GATT Uruguay Round Agreements
  • BISD- principal decisions, resolutions, recommendations and reports adopted by the GATT Contracting Parties.

Copyright Law > Many resources are available under this heading including the following:

Patent Law> Many resources are available under this heading including the following:

  • European Patent Office Manual of Classification  
  • ALLPAT - Combined file of U.S. patents, European patent applications, Patent Abstracts of Japan, and Patent Cooperation Treaty patent applications.
  • INPADOC - The INPADOC-Family and Legal Status Database contains bibliographic and legal status information for patents issued in 67 countries and patenting organizations. The International Patent Documentation Center is operated by the European Patent Office in Vienna, Austria.

Trademark Law > Many resources are available under this heading including the following:


Most of the intellectual property law material on Westlaw can be found in:



Collections of Articles and Bibliographies on IIP Law

IIP Law Journals


In Print

Search Legal Periodicals Indexes

If you are having difficulty finding relevant articles, you can search the following periodical indexes. These searches are only for the title or abstract of the article, these are NOT FULL-TEXT searches.

About Legal Periodical Indexes

  • Unlike Lexis and Westlaw full-text law review databases, legal periodical indexes include almost every U.S. law review article from 1980 to present. Therefore, one advantage to searching these indexes is that it allows you to search more journal articles. Another advantage is when you recieve too many irrelevant results from your full-text searches. If this is the case, an index search may give you better results since you are not searching the full-text of each article. Also, if you are interested in historical research, articles published between 1918 and 1980 are only searchable using an index. Select "Legal Periodicals Retro" when searching the Index to Legal Periodicals and Books for these older articles.
  • The printed indexes are located in the Library's Fourth Floor Reading Room. The bound law reviews are shelved in the Fifth Floor Stacks, while recent unbound issues of law reviews are shelved at the Circulation Desk.

What to do after finding an article in an index or bibliography?

San Francisco Public Library Non-Law Journals

  • If an article you have found is not in a law-related journal, and not in one of the non-law online resources at Hastings, you may want to search the online databases collection at the San Francisco Public Library. You can check to see if the journal issue you want is accessible from one of the databases provided by the San Francisco Public Library (SFPL), by searching their Periodical Finder. Or you can search through the various SFPL journal indexes. Any resident of California may apply for a SFPL Library card to get online full-text access.

Retrieve Articles using Inter-Library Loan

  • If you are unable to find the article using UC Hastings and SFPL resources, you can search for an article using FirstSearch and searching the ArticleFirst database and then click on the ILL icon at the top of the page to request the article.
Intellectual Property Law Institutions

Global Legal Institutions

  • WIPO, WTO and UNESCO are the main global institutions that administer International Intellectual Property Treaties.
Full-text Creation Agreements and Official Websites

World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)

World Trade Organization (WTO)

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV)

Regional IP Institutions

U.S. IP Institutions

Foreign IP Institutions

Sources of Intellectual Property Law

Major International Intellectual Property Treaties

Treaties (This includes conventions, agreements and protocols): Full-Text and Commentary


Patents and Trademarks


Online IP Law Databases and Collections of Laws
  • WIPO Lex - the on-line legal database of intellectual property (IP) laws and treaties of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). This is an amazing free online collection; a great place to start your research.





Collections of IIP Laws in Print

  • World Intellectual Property Rights and Remedies K1401 .W675 (5th Stacks)
  • Copyright laws and treaties of the world K1419.2 .C6 (5th Stacks)
  • International copyright law and practice K1420.5 .I5 1988 (5th Stacks)
News, Blogs, & Current Awareness Updates



Current Awareness

IIP Law Podcasts and Video casts

Select IIP Related Organizations
Research Guides

UC Hastings Research Guides

Non-Hastings Research Guides

Resource Guide for Researching Intellectual Property Law in an International Context by Andrew Larrick, Columbia Law School, Arthur W. Diamond Law Library.

International Intellectual Property Resource Guide
by Matt Morrison, Cornell Law library.
  • This guide is organized in two main ways: International Intellectual property sources are organized by Convention and by IP subject: Copyright, Patent and Trade Secrets and Trademark and Licensing.

Features - Update to Researching Intellectual Property Law in an International Context
By Stefanie Weigman on
  • Weigman's guide defines intellectual property and explains the nature of the international agreements on intellectual property. It identifies primary and secondary sources of foreign and international intellectual property law.

ASIL Electronic Resource Guide: International Intellectual Property Law
by Jonathan Franklin

Online Resources on Intellectual Property Rights
- O'Quinn Law Library

IP Research Guide
- The Bora Laskin Law Library at the University of Toronto.
  • List of annotated links to Canadian-based, U.S.-based, and International Intellectual Property Sources

Legal research for the 21st century [video recording] : advanced research
  • KF240 .B474 2001 (Reference Desk)
  • The third volume of this 4 video set is on Intellectual Property
Subject Specialist
Picture: Hilary Hardcastle

Hilary Hardcastle
Head of Reference Services
Tel: 565-4792

Picture: Vincent Moyer

Vincent Moyer
Foreign, Comparative and International Law Librarian
Tel: 565-4752

Encore Catalog Search

The Hastings Encore Catalog is our search engine to find books and journals in the Hastings Law Library; articles and journals on HeinOnline, ProQuest Central, Oxford Journals Online and PubMed Central; as well as materials found in libraries around the world via Worldcat.