Published on 8 February 2012.

The Attorney-General, the Hon Nicola Roxon MP, has announced the appointment of Professor Jill McKeough as Commissioner in charge of the ALRC’s Inquiry into Copyright Law. Professor McKeough is currently Dean of Law at the University of Technology, Sydney and will take leave from this position to join the ALRC for the duration of this inquiry. Professor McKeough is a highly regarded academic, researcher and writer with a special focus on intellectual property—including copyright, designs, patents, trademarks, confidential information, biotechnology and indigenous cultural heritage. 

ALRC President Professor Rosalind Croucher stated, “We are delighted that Professor McKeough has been appointed to oversee this inquiry. This inquiry will require the ALRC to consult widely on controversial areas of copyright law in the digital environment and suggest strategies for improvement. Professor McKeough’s in-depth knowledge and extensive experience in the area will be invaluable in helping the ALRC to traverse this complex area of law.”  

Professor McKeough has published many articles and books in this area, including Intellectual Property: Commentary and Materials 2006 (with Professor Kathy Bowrey of UNSW and Professor Philip Griffith of UTS) and Intellectual Property in Australia, 2004 (with Professor Andrew Stewart of Flinders University and Professor Philip Griffith of UTS).

Professor McKeough stated, “I look forward to contributing to the ALRC as it undertakes this important inquiry which raises complex and challenging issues for both creators and users of copyright material and will require a broad conversation between all stakeholders.”

The ALRC expects to receive final Terms of Reference once the Government’s process of stakeholder consultation on the draft Terms is completed by the end of March.  

The ALRC will publish a regular e-newsletter with news and updates throughout the inquiry and people can subscribe to this newsletter or find further information about the Copyright Inquiry on the ALRC website. The ALRC also uses Twitter to update followers about the ALRC’s work.