College of Law > Faculty & Staff > Full-time Faculty > Joshua D. Sarnoff

Joshua D. Sarnoff

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  • Professor of Law
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  • Full-time
  • (312) 362-6326
  • ​723 Lewis Center

Joshua D. Sarnoff is a Professor of Law at DePaul University, received the 2018 DePaul Spirit of Inquiry Award, and has received numerous awards for his scholarship. He is an internationally recognized expert on the intersections of intellectual property law, environmental law, health law, and constitutional, administrative, and international law.  In June 2019, he testified before the Intellectual Property Subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee on pending legislation to revise subject matter eligibility doctrine under Section 101 of the Patent Act (testimony here).  From January 2014 to July 2015, he served as the Thomas A. Edison Distinguished Scholar at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Professor Sarnoff is proficient in on-line, doctrinal, clinical, and legal writing instruction. He has taught courses at American and international law schools and legal research centers. His teaching interests are in the fields of intellectual property law, environmental law, health law, and constitutional, administrative, and international law. He directed the DePaul Center for Intellectual Property and Information Technology (CIPLIT®), and organized and moderated the 2018 Jaharis Health Law Symposium on Emergency and Technological Responses to Pandemic Diseases and the 2011, 2015, and 2019 Intellectual Property Scholars Conferences (IPSC). He also hosts the annual Edward D. Manzo Scholars in Patent Law series.

Professor Sarnoff clerked for the Honorable Irving L. Goldberg of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He has substantial practice experience in the public and private sectors and as an academic providing litigation, counseling, and advocacy services addressing international and domestic environmental, intellectual property, and food and drug laws. He has consulted for or advocated on behalf of legislative coalitions, intergovernmental organizations, foundations, corporations, non-profit organizations, and various groups of academics. He has filed numerous amicus briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (including for the American Medical Association and for law professors). He graduated in 1986 from Stanford Law School in 1986, where he was the Administrative Editor of the Stanford law Review, and in 1981 from M.I.T., where he was Phi Beta Kappa.

His current research focuses on: innovation policy and technology development; climate change technology and data, climate modification, and governance; utility and design patent empirical analyses, history, and theory; responses to pandemic diseases; and intellectual property rights in genetic and natural resources, diagnostics, and therapeutics. He is the editor and co-author of the Research Handbook on Intellectual Property and Climate Change (Edward Elgar Publ. 2016), and has published extensively in law reviews and peer reviewed journals. Selected recent publications are listed below.


JD, Stanford Law School (1986); Honors: Administrative Editor, Stanford Law Review BS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1981); Honors: Phi Beta Kappa

Areas of Expertise

  • Patents Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Climate Change
  • Health and Intellectual Property Laws
  • Administrative, Constitutional, and International Laws

Courses Taught

  • Patent Law
  • Administrative Law
  • Advanced Concepts in Patent Law
  • Law and Climate Change
  • Appellate Advocacy – Patent Moot Court
  • Intellectual Property and Human Rights

Selected Works