Colleen V. Chien

Associate Professor of Law (On Leave 2014-15)


Professor Colleen Chien is nationally known for her research and publications surrounding domestic and international patent law and policy issues. She has testified before Congress and the DOJ/FTC/PTO on patent issues, frequently lectures at national law conferences and has published several in-depth empirical studies, including of patent litigation, patent amicus briefs, compulsory licensing, patent-assertion entities (PAEs), and the secondary market for patents. She is an expert on the International Trade Commission (ITC), a topic on which she has authored several articles and co-authors a practice guide, The Section 337 Patent Investigation Management Guide.

Prior to joining the Santa Clara University School of Law faculty in 2007, Professor Chien prosecuted patents at Fenwick & West LLP in San Francisco, as an associate and then Special Counsel, and was a Fellow at the Stanford Center for Law and the Biosciences. She also did stints as a strategy consultant at Dean and Company, a spacecraft engineer at NASA/Jet Propulsion Lab, and an investigative journalist at the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (as a Fulbright Scholar). She lives in the east bay with her husband and their two sons.

In 2013 Professor Chien was named the inaugural Eric Yamamoto Emerging Scholar and one of Silicon Valley’s “Women of Influence.” She has received gifts and grants for research including from the New America Foundation.


J.D., Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California, Berkeley

A.B. and B.S. in Engineering, Stanford University (with Distinction and Honors)

Areas of Specialization

Patent Prosecution, IP Counseling, International Property Law

Affiliations and Honors

Fellow, Stanford School of Law Center for Law and the Biosciences, 2006

Eric Yamamoto Emerging Scholar

2013 Silicon Valley “Woman of Influence”



Section 337 Patent Investigation Management Guide with Menell, Busey, Cordell, Davis, Powers, and Sobin. Lexis (2012) | Link to Library Catalog


Patent Holdup, the ITC, and the Public Interest, with Lemly, 98 Cornell Law Review 1-45 (2012)

Reforming Software Patents, 50 Houston Law Review 325-390 (2012) | Link to Digital Commons

Race to the Bottom, 51 Intellectual Asset Management Magazine 10-17 (January/February 2012) | Link to Digital Commons

Protecting Domestic Industries at the ITC, 28 Santa Clara Computer & High Technology Law Journal 169-192 (2011) | Link to Digital Commons

Patent Amicus Briefs: What the Courts' Friends Can Teach Us About the Patent System, 1 UC Irvine Law Review 398-433 (2011) | Link to Digital Commons

Predicting Patent Litigation, 90 Texas Law Review 283-329 (2011) (Reprinted at 44 Intellectual Property Law Review 77-123 (2012)) | Link to Digital Commons

From Arms Race to Marketplace: The New Complex Patent Ecosystem and Its Implications for the Patent System, 62 Hastings Law Journal 297-355 (2010) | Link to Digital Commons

Of Trolls, Davids, Goliaths, and Kings: Narratives and Evidence in the Litigation of High-Tech Patents, (Symposium: Frontiers in Empirical Patent Law Scholarship), 87 North Carolina Law Review 1571-1615 (2009) | Link to Digital Commons

Patently Protectionist? An Empirical Analysis of Patent Cases at the International Trade Commission, 50 William and Mary Law Review 63-114 (2008) | Link to Digital Commons

HIV/AIDS Drugs for Sub-Saharan Africa: How Do Brand and Generic Supply Compare?, 2 PLoS ONE e278 (2007) (Reprinted in HIV/AIDS-Health Care & Human Rights, IFCAI Press (2007)) | Link to Digital Commons

Cheap Drugs at What Price to Innovation: Does the Compulsory Licensing of Pharmaceuticals Hurt Innovation?, 18 Berkeley Technology Law Journal 853-907 (2003) | Link to Digital Commons

Are the U.S. Patent Priority Rules Really Necessary?, with Lemley, 54 Hastings Law Journal 1299-1333 (2003) (Reprinted in 36 Intellectual Property Law Review 3-37 (2004)) | Link to Digital Commons

Other Articles

Managing Innovation: University-Industry Partnerships and the Licensing of the Harvard Mouse, with Blaug and Shuster, 22 Nature Biotechnology 761-763 (2004) | Link to Full Text

Tasini: Moving Toward a Global Model for the Use of Journalists' Works?, with DuBois, no. 113 Copyright World 12-14 (Sept. 2001)


Patent Assertion and Startup Innovation. New America Foundation (2013) (Report from the New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute (OTI)) | Link to Digital Commons | Link to Full Text

The Effect of Capillary Connectivity Across Horizontal Fractures on Gravity Drainage from Fractured Porous Media Annual Technical Conference: Papers with Stones, Zimmerman and Marsden. (Conference Paper) Society of Petroleum Engineers (1992) | Link to Full Text