KU Leuven’s (KUL) Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP) is an academic research centre at the KUL Faculty of Law and Criminology, specialising in the legal and ethical aspects of IT innovation and intellectual property. The centre’s research aims at fundamentally rethinking the current legal framework in light of rapid technological change by adopting an intra- and extra-juridical interdisciplinary approach encompassing legal, technical, economic, ethical, and socio-cultural perspectives. Its international reputation has established CiTiP as a law and ethics partner on large international and interdisciplinary research projects covering the areas of Artificial Intelligence & Autonomous systems, Data Protection & Privacy, eHealth & Pharma, Ethics & Law, Intellectual Property, Media & Telecommunications and (Cyber)security.

Given its established expertise in Intellectual Property, within the DAFNE+ project, KU Leuven CiTiP is leading Work Package 6. Dr. Thomas Margoni is the project P.I with Leander Samuel Stähler and Francesca Portante d’Alessandro as researchers. By bringing its in-depth legal knowledge to the table, the centre is responsible for the drafting of deliverable 6.1, which will provide relevant legal research and analysis of the IPR and data privacy implications of the DAFNE+ platform and its use of blockchain technology. This contribution is essential in understanding the problems and opportunities of implementing the DAFNE+ platform.

The research will first map relevant applicable legal frameworks, focusing on copyright and related rights due to their direct relevance to the project’s use cases. Exclusive rights licensing through non-fungible tokens will then be assessed, utilising an empirical study of NFT sale platforms’ user rights terms of service to highlight current system flaws and develop a proposal on modular licensing for the online sale of digital assets. The proposed model will consist of a flexible licensing scheme of economic, commercial, and creative rights that will benefit both buyer and seller while empowering creators. Finally, the research will investigate the distinct copyright concerns of each of the project’s three use cases, proposing how the asset can be licensed to respect rights holders’ interests yet grant user rights to the acquirer. Alongside highlighting the problems and opportunities arising from the project platform and three use cases, the centre also aims to produce independent research material that may help further develop the project.

Within the above tasks, KU Leuven CiTiP actively collaborates with the FabCity Foundation on achieving the goals set by Work Package 6 and the dissemination strategy of Work Package 7. Regular meetings through communication channels ensure the smooth functioning of such partnerships.

In summary, KU Leuven CiTiP’s expertise and experience in the legal field contribute to the projects’ implementation and overall success.