Melanie Aitken

Melanie Aitken is the Managing Principal of Bennett Jones (US) LLP. She is also co-head of the competition and foreign investment practice of Bennett Jones. She specializes in global antitrust and competition law and litigation.

Melanie served as Canada’s Competition Commissioner, in charge of the Canadian Competition Bureau from 2009 to 2012, having previously served as the Senior Deputy Commissioner leading merger review from 2006 to 2009.

While serving as Commissioner, Melanie led many high-profile civil and criminal matters and worked extensively with leaders of international antitrust authorities around the world on enforcement and policy cases, holding leadership roles in key international organizations, such as the Steering Committee of the International Competition Network.

Melanie was a partner at Bennett Jones and Davies Ward Philips & Vineberg before joining the Bureau in 2005. She has acted as counsel in the Supreme Court of Canada and represented the merging parties in Canada’s leading efficiencies case, Superior Propane. Melanie has an active antitrust advisory, trial and commercial practice, representing major Canadian and US companies in significant matters across a broad range of industries.

Melanie is a frequent speaker and commentator on competition issues, and has taught as an Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall and Queen’s Law Schools. She is active on the C.D. Howe Institute’s Competition Policy Council, and sits on the Advisory Boards of the Global Antitrust Institute, Schulich School of Business (Toronto, Canada), and W@CompetitionAmericas, and has been appointed a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. Melanie also serves as a non-governmental advisor to the International Competition Network.

The Battle Over Patents: A Summary

Adapted from The Battle over Patents: History and Politics of Innovation, edited by Stephen H. Haber and Naomi R. Lamoreaux (Oxford University Press, 2021). Complaints about the patent system are not new. Virtually all arguments that critics seize upon today to support their suggestions for a patent reform have
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IP is Not IP: Intellectual Property is Not Industrial Policy, and Why This Matters 

Competition by China with the United States for global leadership in innovation has prompted anew an age-old policy debate: What are the best policies and legal institutions to promote next-generation inventions like 5G, AI, and mRNA vaccines? Are innovations best promoted and distributed either through industrial policy initiatives like prizes,
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LeadershIP Hosts Webinar on the DMA and the US Antitrust Bills

On June 30, LeadershIP hosted a webinar titled EU DMA vs. US Legislative Proposals: Lessons and Path Forward, where the discussion focused on the Digital Markets Act (DMA)—the legislation recently adopted by the European Union that imposes obligations and prohibitions on the world’s largest digital platforms such as Apple,
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