While I’ve know about this for awhile, the information is now public so I can tell you all about it. My former boss, Professor Brian Fitzgerald—specialist Research Professor in Intellectual Property and Innovation, Co-Project Lead of Creative Commons Australia where I worked for 8 years, and more recently a Director of the corporation and member of the Board of Creative Commons—is taking up a new position as Executive Dean of  the new Faculty of Law at the Australian Catholic University from March this year.

As most people who know me well can attest, I have nothing but admiration for Brian’s trailblazing leadership is so many of the areas I give a shit about. Before joining the Australia Council for the Arts I worked under Brian at ccAustralia. That is a time of my life that, despite the workload, will always be crucial to who I am today.

In my areas of (personal and professional) interest Brian has done everything! He has postgraduate degrees in law from Oxford and Harvard. He is a Chief Investigator and Program Leader for Law at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation where he was the Law for Creative Innovation research program. He also was Program Leader of the Intellectual Property: Knowledge, Culture and Economy research program at the Law and Justice Research Centre. Through both roles Brian headed up research projects worth $5 million+ including Peer-to-Patent Australia, Access to and use of Public Sector Information (auPSI), the Open Access to Knowledge Law Project (OAK Law) and Opening Access to Australia’s Archives.

He’s written and delivered hundreds of papers, books, reports, lectures, seminars and workshops on intellectual property, copyright, Creative Commons, open content licensing, innovation in the digital economy, intellectual property in developing countries and heaps more topics. He has supervised a string of amazing people through their PhDs who are continuing to forge ahead in so many of these areas. He sat on the Government 2.0 Taskforce and is a Commissioner of the Queensland Law Reform Commission till 2013. He was Head of School the School of Law and Justice at Southern Cross University (1998 – 2002) and the School of Law at QUT (2002 – 2007). He practiced with Crown Law in Queensland and was a Research Associate at the High Court of Australia.

Listing Brian’s achievements is one thing; but more than all of this, for nearly 8 years Brian was the mentor I never really knew I had. I didn’t know at that first meeting in the dungeons of C Block (ie Level 3 of the Law building at QUT Gardens Point) that Brian would become the most influential and foundational voice guiding me on my own personal and professional trajectory. So much of my philosophical position, of my big ideas and my fiery passion was and is directly attributable to being part of ‘the Brian Fitzgerald projects.’

I for one am very excited to see what this new set of Brian Fitzgerald projects will deliver. Congratulations Brian! I know I don’t need to wish you every success in this new venture; everything you work on has a life of its own.

Brian Fitzgerald by Joi Ito. © Copyright 2009 Joi Ito. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic licence.

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