- Technology Law, computer software licensing and distribution
- Open Source licensing, business structures and compliance
- Open hardware licensing
- Open data, legal aspects of AI
- Standards, open source, and IP policies
About Andrew Katz
Andrew has over 25 years’ experience as a technology lawyer. He joined Moorcrofts in March 2000, shortly after the firm was founded.
He is one of the UK’s leading free and open-source lawyers, is a Fellow of the Free Software Foundation Europe and the Open Forum Academy, and for 7 years held the post of visiting lecturer at Queen Mary, University of London, on Free and Open-Source Software. He has lectured on open issues globally at venues, including London, Paris, New York, Boston, Tokyo, Seoul, Helsinki, Stockholm, Dubai, Mangalia (Romania), Brussels, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Yokohama, Edinburgh, Oxford and Cambridge. He is also a visiting researcher at the University of Skövde, Sweden where he has co-authored papers whose findings have been adopted into Swedish government policy.
Andrew drafted the widely-used solderpad Open Hardware Licence and is on the core legal team for drafting the CERN Open Hardware licence. Clients have included some of the world’s leading free and open-source software companies and projects, including Canonical (Ubuntu) and CentOS (where he negotiated the business transfer to Red Hat).
He handles cloud computing and project agreements, including complex data protection issues, and has recently been involved in the rapidly expanding fields of open data and open hardware. As well as speaking on legal issues at the 2012 Open Hardware Summit in New York, he co-chaired the 2014 Open Hardware and Data Conference in Barcelona (the world’s first legal conference specialising in open hardware and data), when he has spoken regularly since. A highlight of his frequent international speaking engagements was providing the keynote speech at OpenSym 2019 in Sweden.
Andrew’s skillsets cover free and open source software licensing, technology law, commercial law and intellectual property. He qualified as a barrister and was called to the bar (Inner Temple) in 1991, and has now re-qualified as practises as a solicitor in England and Wales. He is also an Irish solicitor (non-practising).
Andrew entered Churchill College at Cambridge University, on a scholarship to study Natural Sciences, and transitioned to the Law Tripos, and has maintained a parallel interest in technology and Law ever since. Prior to studying for the Bar, he was a computer consultant (and accredited NeXT Developer), was involved in the original Statute Law Database Project and advised the Incorporated Council for Law Reporting on data storage on CD-ROM. After passing the bar finals, he was employed as a barrister by Winward Fearon & Co in London, a leading construction litigation firm, where he was one of the first lawyers to apply database technology to document indexing to assist in the discovery process in large scale litigation. In 1993, after requalifying as a solicitor, he joined the long-established Midlands firm of Brethertons in their company-commercial department, and in 1996 he became that firm’s youngest ever partner. In 2000, after a brief stint at BP Collins in Buckinghamshire, he accepted Adrian’s invitation to join the newly-founded Moorcrofts.
He has been a board member of the Telecommunications Industry Association, the MariaDB Foundation and Public Software CIC, and general counsel of OpenUK. He is also CEO of the Moorcrofts sister company, Orcro Limited, which provides advice and consultancy on Open Source compliance and supply chain management and is an accredited partner of the Linux Foundation’s OpenChain project.
Publications of Note
On Challenges for Implementing ISO Standards in Software: Can Both Open and Closed Standards Be Implemented in Open Source Software?
B Lundell, J Gamalielsson, A Katz
Corporate and Global Standardization Initiatives in Contemporary Society … 2018
On implementation of Open Standards in software: To what extent can ISO standards be implemented in open source software?
B Lundell, J Gamalielsson, A Katz
International Journal of Standardization Research (IJSR) 13 (1), 47-73 – 2015
Software, Copyright, and the Learning Environment: An Analysis of the IT Contracts Swedish Schools Impose on Their Students and the Implications for FOSS
A Katz, B Lundell, J Gamalielsson
IFOSS L. Rev. 8, 1 – 2016
2018 A survey of open processor core licensing
International Free and Open Source Software Law Review 4 (1)
Research on Open Innovation
Open Forum Academy, 2015
The International FOSS Law Book (UK Chapter)
Open Source Press, 2014
Free and Open Source Software
Oxford University Press, 2013 (with Walden, Shemtov et al.)
Google, APIs and the Law. Use, Reuse and Lock-In
Google and the Law, 287-301 – 2012
Towards a Functional Licence for Open Hardware
International Free and Open Source Software Law Review, 2012
A Manager’s Guide to IT Law
BCS Press, 2011 (with Holt, Newton et al.)
Open Design Now
BIS Publishers, 2011
Intelligent Agents and Internet Commerce In Ancient Rome
Computers and Law magazine 2008
Certificate in Copyright Law (CopyrightX)
Berkman Center, Harvard (distance learning) (2014)
Churchill College, Cambridge (1994)
BA Hons Law
Churchill College, Cambridge (1988)
Barrister-at-Law (Inner Temple)
Council of Legal Education
Family, geekery, live music (especially in Oxford), travel, food and wine, digital rights, open hardware design.
He is currently researching Open Hardware licensing, the application of the law to machine leasing and artificial intelligence and the role of standards in Open Source development.
- Founder Editor of the International Free and Open Source Law Review, JOLTS (Journal of Open Law, Technology and Society)
- Advisory panel (formerly editor): Journal of Open Hardware
- Advisor: Low RISC Foundation. Technical Advisory Board
- Open UK: IP and Policy Advisory Group
- Licensing Panel: FOSSi Foundation
- United Nations Technology Innovation Labs: advisory panel