No women, no Kats, in race to rule WIPO

Merpel: too modest to stand
for election this time round ...
The pressroom of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has been quick to tell us the names of the candidates for the post of Director General.  None of the four, at the time of writing, are women [there is a process for gender reassignment, notes Merpel, but this takes a little while], and none of them are cats, Kats or anything feline at all [in this instance, Merpel adds, there is no remedial surgical procedure].  Merpel had thought of submitting her own application, but decided not to.  After all, once she had solved all the problems of the IP world, sorted out the development agenda, killed the bad trolls and empowered the good ones, balanced the competing interests of owners and users and relocated WIPO from ever-so-expensive Switzerland to somewhere cheap-and-cheerful like Alicante [only joking!], there wouldn't be much for bloggers to write about.

Anyway, according to the WIPO newsflash:
Four candidatures for the post of Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) were received by 5 p.m. (Geneva time) on December 6, 2013, the deadline fixed [always a little squeamish about choice of vocabulary, this Kat prefers not to see the word "fixed" in the context of elections and competitive appointments] for the submission of names.

The candidates are (in alphabetical order of names of candidates): Mr. Francis Gurry (Australia), Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama (Nigeria), Mr. Jüri Seilenthal (Estonia), and Mr. Alfredo Suescum (Panama).

The WIPO Coordination Committee, which is composed of 83 member states, will meet on March 6 and 7, 2014 to nominate a candidate for appointment to this position by the WIPO General Assembly, which is scheduled on May 8 and 9, 2014.

The process of selecting a Director General is governed by the Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization and “The Procedures for the Nomination and Appointment of Directors General of WIPO,” adopted by the General Assembly of WIPO in September 1998.
The first-named candidate, Francis Gurry, is the incumbent Director General and the only one of the four to have his own Wikipedia page (here), though this Kat suspects that it won't be long before the others are there too -- and that there will be a good deal of blogging, Tweeting, Facebooking and general activity on the social media as interest increases in all four and in their respective messages and manifestos, even though the decision is made by WIPO Member States and not by readers of this weblog the public at large.

Naturally this weblog will keep readers abreast of developments.  The last word goes to Merpel who says, between gritted teeth, "May the best man win ..."

Well, says the IPKat, we know who the men are.  But which women should be running for the post of Director General next time round?  Readers' suggestions are welcome.
No women, no Kats, in race to rule WIPO No women, no Kats, in race to rule WIPO Reviewed by Jeremy on Saturday, December 07, 2013 Rating: 5


  1. Meanwhile, don't miss the fun and games on IP Redneck and the US's attempt to undermine Gurry. I personally have no idea as to how justified it all is, but it appears to have aroused ire on both sides of Congress. However, it seems to me that, if Mr. Gurry can unite US Congress, we badly need to keep him.

  2. If wipo is led by a woman, will it need to change its name to OHER?

  3. For more on what Americans say they dislike in Francis Gurry, see the Patent Watchdog blog of Gene Quinn.

    He is spying on his employees, they say, to find out who is the mole.

    Intolerable, they assert. Outrageous! Impeach him! Jim Pooley must replace him, immediately.

    One can only surmise, what it really is, that Americans have against the Australian incumbent.


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