Former WIPO Directors General

Francis Gurry (Australia)

2008 to 2020: Fourth Director General of WIPO and Secretary-General of UPOV
2003 to 2008: Deputy Director General
1999 to 2003: Assistant Director General and Legal Counsel
1997 to 1999: Legal Counsel
1993 to 1997: Office of Deputy Director General
1990 to 1993: Office of the Director General
1988 to 1990: Head, Industrial Property Law Section
1985 to 1988: Consultant and Senior Program Officer

Dr. Gurry obtained a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) in 1980 from the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, after having achieved a Master of Laws (LL.M) in 1976 from the University of Melbourne, Australia. In 1975 he served as an Admitted Barrister and Solicitor at the Supreme Court of Victoria, Australia. He received a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) at the University of Melbourne, Australia, in 1974. He holds many honorary doctorates from higher institutions around the world. He has been appointed on numerous advisory and editorial boards and has authored several books and journal articles.

Kamil IDRIS (Sudan)

1997 to 2008: Third Director General of WIPO and Secretary-General of UPOV
1994 to 1997: Deputy Director General
1985 to 1994: Director, Development Cooperation and External Relations Bureau for Arab Countries
1990 to 1992: In charge of specific activities in Central and Eastern European countries
1982 to 1985: Senior Program Officer in the Development Cooperation and External Relations Bureau for Africa

Dr. Idris obtained Master degrees in International Law and International Affairs from the University of Ohio (USA), Bachelor of Law (LLB) from the University of Khartoum (Sudan), and Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, Political Science and Economic Theories from the University of Cairo (Egypt). He holds a doctorate degree in International Law from the Graduate Institute of International Studies, University of Geneva (Switzerland). Before joining WIPO, Dr. Idris served as an Attorney-at-Law, Advocate and Commissioner for Oaths. He was a Professor of International Law and Ambassador in the Sudanese Foreign Service. He served in the Permanent Mission of his country to the United Nations in Geneva, and assumed the position of Spokesman and Coordinator of the Group of developing countries (Group of 77).

Arpad BOGSCH (Hungary and United States of America)

1973 to 1997: Second Director General of WIPO and Secretary-General of UPOV
1970 to 1973: First Deputy Director General of WIPO
1963 to 1970: Deputy Director General of the United International Bureaux for the Protection of Intellectual Property (BIRPI).

Dr. Bogsch began his professional career in 1942 as an attorney in Budapest. In 1948, he moved to Paris as a legal officer at United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Copyright Division. In 1954, he took up a post as legal counsellor at the U.S Copyright Office in Washington, D.C. He held law degrees from Hungary, France and the United States, and was a member of the bar of Budapest and of Washington.

Georg BODENHAUSEN (Netherlands)

1970 to 1973: First Director General of WIPO
1969 to 1973: Secretary General of the Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV)
1963 to 1970: Director of BIRPI (United International Bureaux for the Protection of Intellectual Property)

Professor Bodenhausen studied law in the Netherlands and practiced there as an independent attorney specialized in intellectual property from 1930 to 1962. He was also professor at the University of Utrecht, teaching intellectual property law.

BIRPI Directors General

Georg H.C. Bodenhausen from 1963 to 1970
Jacques Secrétan from 1953 to 1963
Bénigne Mentha from 1938 to 1953
Fritz Ostertag from 1926 to 1938
Ernest Röthlisberger from 1922 to 1926
Robert Comtesse from 1912 to 1921
Henri Morel from 1893 to 1912