Reminder: 2nd Shamnad Basheer Essay Competition on Intellectual Property Law [Submit by July 14]

Photograph of Prof. (Dr.) Shamnad Basheer

On the occasion of our Founder Prof. (Dr.) Shamnad Basheer’s 45th birth anniversary on 14th May, we had announced the second edition of the Shamnad Basheer Essay Competition on Intellectual Property Law to celebrate his memory and his legacy of outstanding scholarship.

We wish to remind you that the deadline for submissions for the competition is July 14, 2021 (23:59 IST).

The details of the competition are as follows:

Eligibility: The competition will be open to students currently enrolled in any LL.B. program (or its equivalent – meaning students enrolled in J.D. programs can take part) across the world.

Registration: There is no registration fee or registration process for the competition. You may e-mail us your essay whenever it is ready.

Co-authorship: Only single author submissions will be accepted for the essay competition. A submission cannot have two or more authors. Submissions with more than one author will not be considered.

Selection of Topic: The topic of the essay can be anything related to intellectual property rights – the more creative the better. We encourage participants to take inspiration from Prof. Basheer’s work, which has challenged the orthodoxy of conventional IP wisdom by looking at the subject through the lens of the global south and its development needs. Two values that guided Prof. Basheer through the course of his academic writing, were the need for transparency and democratic participation, during the process of making the law and implementation. His commitment to transparency in enforcement of India’s patent law led him to suing the Patent Office on two occasions in order to secure our right to information. He was also playful in his writing, never afraid to think and communicate unconventionally. He brought rigour and substance to his non-conforming ways and we encourage you to bring the same spirit into your entries.

Word Limit: The word limit for submissions is 5,000 words (inclusive of footnotes).


  • Please submit the essays in a MS Word format, with 1.5 line spacing. Please do not submit essays in a PDF format.
  • We are not prescribing any specific format for footnoting. As long as it is consistent, it should not be a problem.

Deadline and other Details:

  • All submissions must be original and unpublished.
  • The deadline for submissions is July 14, 2021 (23:59 IST).
  • Please e-mail all submissions and queries to [email protected] (only).
  • Please submit a covering letter stating the law school where you are enrolled as a student, along with your essay.

Prizes for Winning Essays

The winning essays will receive the following prizes:

First prize: INR 15,000

Second prize : INR 10,000

Third prize : INR 5,000

Panel of Judges

Entries will be scored on creativity and analytical strength. Judges will also take into account entries that demonstrate the values Prof. Basheer displayed in his life and career. This does not mean you have to necessarily agree with everything he wrote. Judges reserve the right not to award the prize if it is considered that no entry is of sufficiently high standard or to divide the prize between two or more entries if they so decide. Judges’ decisions in this respect will be final.

The SpicyIP team may shortlist essays to be submitted to an external panel of experts for the final decision. The following experts have very graciously consented to judging the competition and we are very thankful to them for sparing their time and providing us with their inputs for this essay competition:

Prof. David Llewelyn

David Llewelyn is a practising lawyer, academic and arbitrator. He is the Managing Director of Singapore law firm David Llewelyn & Co. LLC; Professor (Practice) at Singapore Management University’s School of Law and Professor of Intellectual Property Law at King’s College London; and sits as an arbitrator in international commercial disputes. He is an IP Adjudicator at the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore and co-author of leading texts on UK and EU trade marks (Kerly’s) and intellectual property law (Cornish, Llewelyn & Aplin), as well as ‘Cases, Materials and Commentary on Singapore Intellectual Property Law’ (2018) and business book ‘Invisible Gold in Asia: Creating Wealth through Intellectual Property’ (2010).

Prof. N.S. Gopalakrishnan

Prof. N.S. Gopalakrishnan, is an Honorary Professor at Inter University Centre for IPR Studies, Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT). He was the Founder Director of the Inter-University Centre for IPR Studies at CUSAT, which today is one of the leading centres of IP research in India. He held the IP chair at the centre until his retirement. During the course of his career, Prof. Gopalakrishnan has extensively advised the Government of India on international IP treaty negotiations and national legislation. He has also authored 3 books and several peer-reviewed articles on IP law. His research and teaching has focused on a developmental perspective of IP law.

Prof. Madhavi Sunder 

Prof. Madhavi Sunder is a Professor of Law and Associate Dean for international and graduate programs at the Georgetown University Law Centre. Previously, she has served as the Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Martin Luther King, Jr. Professor of Law at the University of California, Davis and has also been a Visiting Professor of Law at the Yale Law School, the University of Chicago Law School and Cornell Law School. Prof. Sunder has earlier been selected as a Carnegie Scholar in 2006 and was the author of ‘The Most Cited International Intellectual Property Article of the Decade (2016)’ (for Madhavi Sunder, IP3, 59 Stanford Law Review 257 (2006)). She has made remarkable contributions in academia through her numerous publications in the Yale Law Journal, the Stanford Law Review and many others, and has edited/ authored four books, including ‘From Goods To A Good Life:Intellectual Property And Global Justice‘ published by the Yale University Press (2012). A leading scholar of law and culture, Prof. Sunder’s work intertwines IP, Human Rights and Freedom of Speech.

If you’ve any queries, please drop us an e-mail at [email protected]We eagerly look forward to your submissions!

P.S. The applications for SpicyIP Fellowship are currently open and will close on June 30, 2021. Also, we’re now on Instagram as well! Follow us @spicyipblog for the latest updates on the blog.

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