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Digital Spark

Speakers from Google, Nokia and Sony lined up for next week's conference in Dundee.

For immediate release: Wednesday 25 August

Senior experts from Google, Nokia and Sony are confirmed to speak at an innovative new creative industries and computer games conference at the University of Abertay Dundee, to outline how businesses can plan for future success.

The Digital Spark conference, which is being held next week on 1 and 2 September and has a small number of spaces still available, brings together legal experts and content producers to help businesses protect their intellectual property (IP) and plan for a profitable, sustainable future.

Scottish Government Culture Minister Fiona Hyslop will open the conference, which features key talks from Google Europe’s Senior Product Counsel Trevor Callaghan, Nokia’s Chief Legal Officer Louise Pentland, and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe’s IP & Technology Director Hogarth Andall.

“Abertay University is rightly recognised as a hub of creative activity and intellectual property generation,” said Dr Margaret Hartnett, conference organiser and IP Manager at Abertay University. “Digital Spark takes our strengths of working with business, and gives creative companies unparalleled access to expert creative and legal minds.

“Creating fantastic games, software or creative content is just the first step towards making a successful business. Unless you can take that product to market in a safe way, and not risk inadvertent copying or your work being counterfeited, the future success of your business may be at risk.”

Legal novices have the rare opportunity at Digital Spark of a crash course in the complexities of legally protecting their businesses from counterfeiting and fraud. Delegates will also have the opportunity to meet the expert speakers at an evening social event to discuss their own business queries.

Margaret added: “This exciting new conference, which still has a handful of spaces left, gives people from the computer games and creative industries the opportunity to really take control of their intellectual property. By clearly laying out the challenges and the risks, Digital Spark will help to empower creative industry professionals.

“With speakers from Google, Nokia, Sony and leading legal firms like Hardwicke, Saul Ewing and Thorntons, Digital Spark is a unique opportunity for an intensive two-day introduction to the complexities and huge opportunities involved in successful IP management.”

Google’s Trevor Callaghan will speak about how content creators and lawyers can best work together to create new products and innovate in a legally safe way; Nokia’s Louise Pentland will look at the challenges of legal protections in the move to a digital age; and Sony’s Hogarth Andall will speak about protecting and enforcing computer games IP.

Other speakers include Michael Rawlinson, Director General of games trade body ELSPA; Tim Collins, Head of Commercial Development for Children's Entertainment at publisher DC Thomson; and Colin Macdonald, former Studio Manager at Realtime Worlds.

Further information about Digital Spark – including online registration – is available at http://digitalspark.abertay.ac.uk/


For media enquiries, please contact Chris Wilson (Communications Officer) – T: 01382 308935 M: 07837 250284 E: chris.wilson@abertay.ac.uk


In the knowledge economy, intangible assets can account for 70% of a company’s value. Digital Spark will explore how to use the intellectual property system efficiently and effectively – laying the ground for future profit generation.

With introductory mini-seminars on the basics of IP, interactive seminars with leading business and legal experts, and presentations from senior representatives of Nokia, Google and Sony, Digital Spark will help creative and games companies plan for their future success.

Abertay University launched the world’s first ever computer games degree in 1997. This postgraduate Masters course was followed by a complementary undergraduate course, and later by specialist courses in production management and game applications development.

Further information about Digital Spark – including online registration – is available at http://digitalspark.abertay.ac.uk/

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