Bucerius students have their cake and moot it

Christian Karschau and Moritz Hahn did their law school proud at the Oxford International IP Moot, where they made it to the quarter-finals

In the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, the organisers of the Oxford International IP Moot saw fit to run the competition in person this year. Loosely based on the “Colin the Caterpillar” IP dispute between Marks & Spencer and Aldi, this year’s problem required mooters to argue whether a cake could be regarded in law as a painting or a “work of artistic craftsmanship”, with the result that copyright could subsist in it. Another key issue was whether using a particular brandy-butter icing on the cake was a form of extended passing off.


Incredible Bucerius perfomance

Representing Bucerius at the moot were Christian Karschau and Moritz Hahn.  The competition organisers were highly impressed by their meticulously researched written submissions, and they were therefore invited to make submissions at the oral proceedings held at Pembroke College, in the glorious ancient seat of learning that is Oxford.

The competition itself was a hotbed of mooting mania, with teams drawn from law schools from all around the world. Bucerius excelled in the first round, winning every moot they took part in. This is a feat never yet accomplished by Bucerius, and is all the more remarkable when considers that they were up against such mooting heavyweights as the University of Hong Kong and UCL.


Closely fought encounter with UofT

Owing to their superb performance in the first round, Bucerius made it through to the quarter-finals (the only non-English-speaking team to do so), where they squared off against the University of Toronto. In this closely fought encounter, the adrenaline surged as the teams did battle while facing down a fierce grilling from the panel of judges, all of whom were IP experts.

Unfortunately, Bucerius were pipped at the post in this showdown, with Toronto going through to the semi-finals. They themselves were then knocked out of the competition, which was ultimately won by the University of Technology Sydney.

Dinners and parties to round up the competition

Nevertheless, the Oxford IP Moot is also about making connections and forming lasting friendships. To this end, the organisers laid on a veritable feast of dinners, drinks parties and other events where students were able to interact and get to know each other.  The socialising extended to the mooters, and even the organisers, partying until the morning light on the final night of the competition!


Thank you to Moritz, Christian and the coaches!

The Bucerius team returned to Hamburg somewhat tired and under the weather, but secure in the knowledge they had done their law school proud in a competition of the highest calibre. The consensus of the team was that the Oxford IP Moot was without doubt the highlight of their law school career so far.

The Foreign Language Communication Programme and the IP Centre would like to congratulate Christian and Moritz on their excellent performance at the competition, and also thank all the coaches who helped them to achieve this great success.


James Linscott