Clause 8 Season 3, Episode 2: Ryan Abbott on Why Patent Law Should Recognize AI Inventors

Eli Mazour‘s Clause 8 Podcast, The Voice of IP, has returned for Season 3, featuring all new exclusive interviews with the intellectual property community’s biggest names.






Good lawyers effectively deal with the present. Very few have what it takes to create the future. Professor Ryan Abbott is doing just that.

He leads the DABUS project: the first time ever an AI machine has been named as an inventor on a patent application. Most thought that the project was an interesting academic exercise that was unlikely to go anywhere. Some – uncharitably – dismissed it as “a publicity stunt.”

Yet, the DABUS project did get a patent in South Africa. And, an Australian judge ruled that AI machine can be recognized as an inventor. Even more significantly, the DABUS project successfully raised awareness about the issue of AI inventorship among policy makers all over the world.

But what does it mean for an AI system to be named as an inventor in the real world?

In this episode, Abbott makes his case for the skeptics: Identifying AI as the inventor on patents is morally and commercially important. He also explains how to judge whether the human pushing the buttons is as much an inventor as the AI they’re programming.

On this episode, Eli and Prof. Abbott talk about the Artificial Inventor Project, whether everything will be “obvious” in the future, and Prof. Abbott’s fascinating new book “The Reasonable Robot: Artificial Intelligence and the Law.”


You can subscribe and listen to the full episode on your favorite podcasting app and learn more at New episodes will drop every Tuesday!