Aleksei Kelli


The aim of this article is to explore the conceptual bases and methodological issues involved in the codification process of Estonia׳s intellectual property law and outline the main results. The conceptual bases of this codification consist of evolutionary development, a comparative-law approach, stakeholder involvement and regulatory impact assessment. The reform draws on the existing regulatory framework (existing IP law), developed further by the identification and use of the best regulatory practices of other countries and model laws. Stakeholder involvement and regulatory impact assessment are used to improve the draft law and make it compatible with Estonian socio-economic conditions.

This article summarises the results of the extensive work from 2012 to 2014 that resulted in the draft Copyright and Related Rights Act, the draft Industrial Property Code and the draft Act Implementing the Copyright and Related Rights Act and the Industrial Property Code with the relevant annexes.

The analysis focuses on the Estonian codification project as a case study. The author relies on traditional research methods from social science and draws on comparative and dogmatic analysis conducted during the codification, using empirical socio-economic data acquired through stakeholder involvement and impact assessment.

The article also reflects the author׳s personal experience, insights and intimate knowledge of the codification process gained through management and coordination of the project and in acting as a head of the expert group on the codification of IP law under the auspices of the Ministry of Justice of Estonia.

The Estonian example could serve as a comparative model for countries aiming to modernise their IP laws within the EU acquis and international legal framework.