Ruth L. Okediji is the Jeremiah Smith Jr. Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and Co-Director of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. She teaches courses in law and technology, intellectual property (IP), and contracts.
She has written widely on a range of matters related to technology transfer, innovation policy, global knowledge governance, and sustainable economic development. Her current research focuses on publicly funded technologies, the regulation of platforms, access to essential medicines, and ethical considerations in biotech regulation. Her published books include a seminal casebook on International Patent Law and Policy (Aspen Law, 2013, 2nd edition forthcoming, 2021) and Copyright Law in an Age of Limitations and Exceptions (OUP, 2017). She is a reviewer and editor of the Journal of World Intellectual Property.
Ruth has served as an advisor to many inter-governmental organizations and national governments on copyright and patent policies, government use of data, and access to pharmaceutical products. She served on the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) Committee on the Impact of Copyright Policy on Innovation in the Digital Era. In 2015-2016, she was appointed by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to the High-Level Panel on Intellectual Property and Access to Medicines. She was recognized in that same year by Managing IP as one of the world’s 50 most influential people in intellectual property law. She currently serves as co-Chair of NASEM Committee focused on improving commercialization of digital products from National Labs.
Over the course of her career, she has been recognized with numerous teaching and service awards including the Regents Superior Teaching Award, the Student Bar Association’s Outstanding Professor Award, Harvard Law School’s Women’s Law Association Shatter the Ceiling Award (twice). She is the 2019 recipient of the Public Knowledge IP3 Award.