Faculty Profiles

Timothy R. Holbrook

Timothy R. Holbrook

Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs, Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law

Areas of Expertise

Intellectual Property, International Patent Law, Patent Litigation, Patent Law, Property Law, Trademark Law and Policy

Curriculum Vitae

Timothy R. Holbrook, Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law, is an internationally recognized patent law scholar. He has authored over forty publications and has given over one hundred presentations around the world on patent law. His recent work has explored the impact of 3D printing on patent law, the extraterritorial reach of US patent law, and the function of patent disclosures. He frequently comments on issues of intellectual property law, appearing in various media, including CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fortune, Scientific American, and Science. Holbrook's work has been cited in briefs before the US Supreme Court, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (the court that hears all appeals in the US arising under the patent laws), and various district courts. The Federal Circuit and district courts have cited his work favorably. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute (ALI) and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.

Holbrook has also been an advocate for the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community. His commentary and op-eds have appeared in various outlets, including CNN, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, and Huffington Post. He has worked to advance the rights of the LGBT community. He previously served on the boards of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund and the Stonewall Bar Association of Georgia. He was co-counsel for former National Football League players on briefs before the US Supreme Court advocating for marriage equality.

Holbrook graduated summa cum laude and as valedictorian from North Carolina State University, earning a BS in chemical engineering with a life sciences concentration. He received his JD from Yale Law School, where he served as a lead editor and publications director of the Yale Journal on Regulation. After law school, he clerked for the Honorable Glenn L. Archer Jr. of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Following his clerkship, Holbrook worked in Budapest, Hungary, with the Hungarian patent law firm Danubia. Upon his return to the United States, he associated with the Washington, DC, law firm of Wiley, Rein & Fielding (now Wiley Rein), where his practice focused on patent and appellate litigation.

Holbrook's work appears in a variety of journals, most recently including Vanderbilt Law Review, NotreDame Law Review, Iowa Law Review, Emory Law Journal, William & Mary Law Review, and Minnesota Law Review. He is the co-author of Patent Litigation and Strategy (5th ed.) with Judge Kimberly A. Moore of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and John Murphy of BakerHostetler.

Before joining the Emory faculty, Holbrook was a tenured professor at the Chicago-Kent College of Law. He served as Edwin A. Heafey Jr. Visiting Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and also has taught as a visiting professor at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and Washington University School of Law in St. Louis. He was a scholar-in-residence at the Center for Media and Communication Studies at the Central European University (CEU) (Budapest, Hungary) and served as a visiting professor in CEU's Legal Studies Department. He served as Emory Law's associate dean of faculty from 2012 until 2015. Holbrook is presently serving as the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs.  In that position he oversees activities that support faculty recruitment, retention, and success at the university level.

While in Chicago, Holbrook was a founder and the program chair for the Richard Linn Inn of Court. Upon arriving in Atlanta, he helped found the Atlanta Intellectual Property Inn of Court, serving as its first president. For his work with the Inns of Court, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal from the Linn Inn Alliance of Intellectual Property American Inns of Court. He also has served as an expert or consultant in a variety of patent litigation cases in the United States and abroad.

In recognition of his teaching and work on inclusion, he has been awarded the Emory Williams Distinguished Teaching Award, the Chesnut LGBT Person of the Year Award at Emory University, the Outstanding Service to the Community Award by the Stonewall Bar Association, the Friends in the Faculty Award from the Division of Campus Life at Emory, and the Professor of the Year by Emory¿s Black Law Students Association.

Education: JD, Yale Law School; BS, Chemical Engineering, North Carolina State University (summa cum laude)


Patent Litigation and Strategy (5th. ed, West 2017) (with Kimberly A. Moore and John F. Murphy).

Book Chapters

Remedies for Digital Patent Infringement, in 3D Printing and Beyond: The Intellectual Property and Legal Implications Surrounding 3D Printing and Emerging Technologies (Mendis, D., Lemley, M., Rimmer, M., eds.) (Edward Elgar 2019).

Extraterritoriality and Digital Patent Infringement, in Research Handbook on Intellectual Property and Didgital Technologies (Edward Elgar, forthcoming 2019).

Journal Articles

"What Counts as Extraterritorial in Patent Law?,” 25 Boston University Journal of Science and Technology Law 291 (2019) (symposium)

“Extraterritoriality and Proximate Cause after WesternGeco,” 21 Yale Journal of Law and Technology 189 (2019).

“Patent Prior Art and Possession," 60 William & Mary Law Review 123 (2018).

“Method Patent Exceptionalism,” 102 Iowa Law Review 1001 (2017).

"Boundaries, Extraterritoriality, and Patent Infringement Damages," 92 Notre Dame Law Review 1745 (2017) (symposium).

"The Federal Circuit's Acquiescence(?)," 66 American University Law Review 1062 (2017) (symposium).

"Is the Supreme Court Concerned with Patent Law, the Federal Circuit, or Both: A Response to Judge Timothy B. Dyk," 16 Chicago-Kent Journal of Intellectual Property Law 313 (2017) (invited essay).

“Patent Disclosures and Time,” 69 Vanderbilt Law Review 1459 (2016) (symposium).

“The Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s Evolving Impact on Claim Construction,” 24 Texas Intellectual Property Law Journal 301 (2016) (symposium), reprinted in 47 Intellectual Property Law Review 71 (2017) (selected as one of the top articles on intellectual property published in 2016).

“Patent Anticipation and Obviousness as Possession,” 65 Emory Law Journal 987 (2016).

“The Supreme Court’s Quiet Revolution in Induced Patent Infringement,” 91 Notre Dame Law Review 1007 (2016)


Opinion and Essay

Trumps potential rules won't erase LGBTQ Americans, CNN OPINION, October 22, 2018

WesternGeco's implications for patent law and beyond, PATENTLYO, June 24, 2018

Deconstructing the question presented in WesternGeco, PATENTLYO, Jan. 15, 2018

It's not about you, Kevin Spacey, CNN OPINION, Nov. 1, 2017

Sessions gets law dead wrong on transgender protections, CNN OPINION, Oct. 6, 2017

Will Chief Justice Roberts save same-sex marriage?, CNN OPINION, June 28, 2017

Life Technologies Corp. v. Promega Corp. and the Absent Presumption Against Extraterritoriality, PATENTLYO, Feb. 27, 2017

Trump shows his true hand on LGBTQ rights, CNN OPINION, Feb. 13, 2017

Supreme Court: Design patents are worth less, but we won¿t tell you how much, THE CONVERSATION, Dec. 8, 2016

Do you buy a smartphone for its curves? Do you buy a car for its cup holders?, THE CONVERSATION, Oct. 13, 2016

The real reason the EpiPen and other off-patents are so expensive, THE CONVERSATION, Aug. 25, 2016

The National Success of, and Challenges for, Intellectual Property American Inns of Court, THE BENCHER, May/June 2016

Georgia, North Carolina bills are about LGBT discrimination. Period., CNN Opinion, March 25, 2016

How 3D Printing Threatens Our Patent System, The Conversation, Jan. 6, 2016reprinted at Scientific American

Give existing reforms a chance to kill patent trolls, The Conversation, July 30, 2015

Marriage equality? Not so fast, CNN Opinion, June 26, 2015

Justice Kennedy comes out for same-sex marriage, The Conversation, June 26, 2015

Are gay marriage opponents being bullied?, CNN Opinion, April 26, 2015

Indiana uses religious freedom against gays, CNN Opinion, March 31, 2015

What same-sex marriage has to do with gun control, CNN Opinion, Nov. 12, 2014

A surprising non-decision, Atlanta Journal Constitution, Oct. 10, 2014

Marriage equality is not like abortion, CNN Opinion, Sept. 23, 2014

Sexual orientation doesn¿t need to be cured, CNN Opinion, July 15, 2014

No basis for marriage ban, Atlanta Journal Constitution, May 8, 2014

Is the Supreme Court About to Rule that Software is Ineligible for Patent Protection?, Forbes, March 16, 2014

Not All Patent Trolls are Demons, CNN Opinion, Feb. 21, 2014

Forget Invisibility: Visibility is the New Superpower, Huffington Post, Jan. 1, 2014

Where are the Gay Federal Appellate Judges?, Huffington Post, Oct. 13, 2013

Why Being a Gay Christian Isn¿t an Oxymoron, Talking Points Memo (TPM), Oct. 4, 2013