Smart agriculture


Start: 30.06.2022
End: 30.06.2022


Seminar, online

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Participants will learn how patents can be used to protect smart agriculture inventions and will find out about some of the challenges in the patent granting process specific to smart agriculture. Participants will see how patents can be used to protect a range of subject-matter (such as a product, process, device or use) by preventing unauthorised commercial exploitation by third parties, but also to find or attract investors, follow trends, protect market share, cement technology partnerships, and increase profits.

The four online lectures are an ideal opportunity for participants to interact with EPO experts, IP experts and inventors specialising in smart agriculture.

Dates & time 
Lecture 1: Thursday, 9 June 2022 14.00 - 15.00 hrs CEST (AS03a-2022)
Lecture 2: Wednesday, 15 June 2022 15.30 - 16.30 hrs CEST (AS03b-2022)
Lecture 3: Thursday, 23 June 2022  14.00 - 15.00 hrs CEST (AS03c-2022)
Lecture 4: Thursday, 30 June 2022 14.00 - 15.00 hrs CEST (AS03d-2022)


The lecture series comprises four online live sessions:

Lecture 1:
Patenting in smart agriculture – challenges from an examiner/patent office perspective 

The technologies englobed under the umbrella of what we know as “smart agriculture” promise a revolution never seen before in agriculture. Indeed, the feeding the world’s growing population in a sustainable way and reducing the impact of climate change are challenges that can also be tackled through innovation. Smart agriculture has therefore drawn the attention of many companies, investors and governments looking to stimulate innovation in this area. It is no wonder that patenting in smart agriculture has increased greatly, creating a shift in the traditional mechanical agricultural technologies towards electronics, CII and AI inventions. At the EPO we also take smart agriculture very seriously and have taken steps to make sure we are up to the challenges, too. In this lecture, it will be explained why innovation in smart agriculture is important, how EPO examiners deal with it and what challenges smart agriculture patents pose to examiners.

Moderator: Christian Weinmüller, examiner, EPO
Ricardo Oltra, team manager, EPO

Lecture 2:
Developing an IP strategy: practical and post-grant aspects of smart agriculture patents

From universities and SMEs to global companies, there are many different strategies for protecting these inventions. Flexible IP strategies adapted to a company's growth phases or its changing position in the innovation cycle help inventors best exploit the full value of their patents. Which IP-related issues should you focus on if you are a growing start-up in smart agriculture or an established company that is switching to smart agriculture solutions?

Moderator:  Ricardo Oltra, team manager, EPO
Paul Jennen, Dutch and European patent attorney at Octrooibureau Van der Lely N.V.

Lecture 3:
IP related challenges for an in-house IP team in a smart agriculture environment

Smart agriculture has changed the landscape of the traditional technologies associated with agriculture. From AI to satellites, autonomous robots and computer implemented inventions, protection is required for a variety of different products and methods. This is true for research institutions, universities and SMEs, as well as for larger companies. However, as larger companies may have larger market share and in house attorneys, their challenges are often different to those faced by SMEs and universities.

Moderator: Ricardo Oltra, team manager, EPO
Fabian Dertenkötter, inhouse attorney, Amazonen-Werke H. Dreyer SE & Co. KG

Lecture 4:
Meet an inventor from the smart agriculture industry

Inventor (name to be confirmed), who has worked at Lely pioneering developments in smart agriculture, will talk about his experiences and best practices on how to overcome challenges and hurdles to successfully reach the market.

Moderator: Ricardo Oltra, team manager, EPO
Paul Jennen, Dutch and European patent attorney at Octrooibureau Van der Lely N.V.
NN (inventor from Lely)

Format: Online seminar. Length: 1 hr each, 4 hrs in total

Course Room Link:

Target groups

Level of expertise



Online training


To deepen your knowledge, we recommend to register in the European Patent Academy’s e-learning centre and enrol for the following self-paced courses:


From idea to patent

The art of reading patent documentation

Think patents: the value of patent documentation for innovation and research

Assessing patentability requirements at the EPO

The European patent system from filing to grant


You could also watch these recorded events on: Artificial Intelligence, Patentability of computer-implemented inventions (CII), New technologies and the patent system and CII in biotech and healthcare:


Patentability in information and communications technology


Venue details

Online event


European Patent Office

European Patent Academy
Bob-van-Benthem-Platz 1
80469 Munich



Registration deadline

Deadline for registration is over.