Shutdown prevents advisor from working new job
THE SANTA CLARA
October 10, 2013
While we have a natural tendency to blame everyone in the government for our current federal shutdown, there is one particular person in the White House whom Santa Clara continues to support: Colleen Chien.
The former Santa Clara Law professor was recently hired as a senior advisor in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. However, less than a month into her new position, she has found herself in an unusual and unwanted position. Work at the OSTP has come practically to a standstill since the government shutdown.
Once the government is finally back on track, Chien will be able to carry out her duties as a senior advisor. She will direct U.S. Chief Technology Officer Todd Park “on issues related to intellectual property and innovation, as well as privacy, open government and civil liberties,” according to a press release by the university.
Chien’s role will also address the controversial practice of patent trolling, a process by which companies acquire old patents and threaten other companies with lawsuits unless they purchase a license. Two of Chien’s most recent academic papers, “Startups and Patent Trolls” and “Patent Trolls by the Numbers,” have garnered national attention.
The Obama administration plans to target the behavior of trolls. They have already taken steps by issuing five executive actions and seven legislative recommendations this past June. Chien’s presence will only propel this reform movement further.
Chien’s research and publications about domestic and international patent law and policy issues have given her a credible voice in the technology policy community. Many of her academic papers discuss the problems of the patent system and propose ways to fix them.
Chien is also constantly on the speaking circuit and in the media, commentating on the patent system.
Although Chien is currently working in the White House, she formerly worked at Santa Clara. She joined the law faculty in 2007.
“For technology policy geeks like me, being an intellectual property law professor is sort of the perfect job,” stated Chien in an article from the Silicon Valley Business Journal. Nevertheless, Chien’s career has been filled with a variety of undertakings.
Before becoming a professor, she prosecuted patents at Fenwick & West in San Francisco as an associate and then Special Counsel. Chien was a Fellow at the Stanford Center for Law and the Biosciences where she received her B.S. in engineering and B.A in 2002.
She worked as a strategy consultant at Dean and Company as a spacecraft engineer at NASA Jet Propulsion Lab, and as an investigative journalist at the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism.
The OSTP government branch counsels the president and the executive branch on the latest information about science and technology.
The primary focus of the OSTP is “to develop and implement sound science and technology policies and budgets,” according to its website.
They emphasize the effects of science and technology on domestic and international affairs. The OSTP works with the private sector, state and local governments, science and education communities and other countries.
With her esteemed federal position, Chien is sure to impact the world on an even broader level. That is, when Congress reaches an agreement and the government shutdown is over.
Contact Eryn Olson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 554-4852.