A 37-year-old law professor at UCLA has won a $50,000 grant to study East Asian attitudes on patents, trademarks and copyrights--an area of law known collectively as intellectual property--and how such attitudes affect U.S. businesses competing in world markets.
The scholarly work is intended to provide down-to-earth guidance on transacting day-to-day business, but it isn't being paid for by a university or a nonprofit organization. Instead, the means for Professor William P. Alford to make the year-long study comes from one of the nation's top 10 law firms, Los Angeles-based O'Melveny & Myers,
O'Melveny & Myers, which describes itself as having "mostly business clients," established the grant to commemorate its 100th anniversary. "We intend to make the award a yearly event," said chairman Warren Christopher, who came up with the idea of funding an annual study of an issue related to law and business.
Christopher said Alford was chosen from 100 applicants by a committee whose members are John F. Akers, president and chief executive of IBM; Bruce MacLaury, president of The Brookings Institution; John McArthur, dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Business, and Susan Westerberg Prager, dean of UCLA Law School.