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WIPO Member States Approve Appointment of New Deputy and Assistant Directors General

Geneva, December 3, 2020

WIPO member states approved the appointment of four Deputy Directors General and four Assistant Directors General proposed by Director General Daren Tang at a Dec. 3, 2020, meeting of the Coordination Committee[1].

Speaking to the Coordination Committee, Mr. Tang said he selected the eight Sector leads for their technical attributes and ability to work together to lead WIPO into its next chapter.

“The Sector leads play an important role as senior leaders of the Organization. Collectively, and together with me, we set the tone at the top. As a team, we are responsible not just for strategy and leadership but also translating strategy into concrete plans, initiatives and actions,” said Mr. Tang, who assumed his role as head of the Organization for a six-year mandate on October 1, 2020.

The successful candidates for the posts of Deputy Directors General and Assistant Directors General are:

  • Lisa Jorgenson (United States of America): Deputy Director General, Patents and Technology Sector.
  • Wang Binying (China): Deputy Director General, Brands and Designs Sector
  • Sylvie Forbin (France): Deputy Director General, Copyright and Creative Industries Sector.
  • Hasan Kleib (Indonesia) Deputy Director General, Regional and National Development Sector.
  • Kenichiro Natsume (Japan): Assistant Director General, Infrastructure and Platforms Sector.
  • Edward Kwakwa (Ghana): Assistant Director General, Global Challenges and Partnerships Sector.
  • Marco Aleman (Colombia): Assistant Director General, IP and Innovation Ecosystems Sector.
  • Andrew Staines (United Kingdom): Assistant Director General, Administration, Finance and Management Sector.

Mr. Tang thanked member states for giving him a strong mandate and team and noted the rich geographical and gender diversity of the team. In particular, three of the four Deputy Directors General are women, comprising 37.5% of its most senior leaders. “This is the most gender diverse senior leadership in WIPO’s history," said Mr. Tang: "It will be a source of strength for WIPO and demonstrate our seriousness about gender diversity.”

The team also brings together experience from academia, the private sector, national IP offices, the United Nations system including WIPO, and international diplomacy. In addition, it brings together WIPO insiders with those from outside WIPO but who are already familiar with the Organization.

Turning to the future, Mr. Tang added: “In this new chapter, WIPO needs to continue being strong in our core areas of running IP registries, providing tools, services and information, and shaping the normative agenda. At the same time, we need to broaden our work now to look at IP from an enterprise and economic perspective.”

“The pandemic has accelerated the shift to digital and increased the importance of innovation and technology. This will mean an increased demand from Members for support and assistance as they look towards innovation and creativity as drivers of economic recovery,” said Mr. Tang.

He said WIPO is ready to meet this challenge, noting that the proposed Deputy Directors General and Assistant Directors General “have not only experience, expertise and commitment, but also the ability to work as a team. We are looking forward to working with all Members and stakeholders to build a balanced, inclusive, forward-looking and dynamic global IP ecosystem. ”

The terms of the incoming Deputy Directors General and Assistant Directors General will start on Jan. 1, 2021, and will coincide with the term of the Director General.

[1] The rules governing the appointment of Deputy Directors General (DDGs) are defined in Article 9(7) of the Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). They provide that the Director General shall appoint the DDGs after approval by the WIPO Coordination Committee, an executive body of WIPO that governs staff-related matters.

Appointment of the Assistant Directors General (ADGs) is governed by WIPO’s Staff Regulations and Rules which provide that the Director General shall take into account the advice of the WIPO Coordination Committee.



About WIPO

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is the United Nations agency that serves the world’s innovators and creators, ensuring that their ideas travel safely to the market and improve lives everywhere.

We do so by providing services that enable creators, innovators and entrepreneurs to protect and promote their intellectual property (IP) across borders and acting as a forum for addressing cutting-edge IP issues. Our IP data and information guide decisionmakers the world over. And our impact-driven projects and technical assistance ensure IP benefits everyone, everywhere.

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