Professor McGowan teaches and writes about intellectual property (IP), antitrust and legal ethics. He is particularly interested in the economic analysis of IP policy and the intersection of IP laws and competition policy. His IP scholarship addresses topics such as antitrust policy in software markets, the implications of network effects for IP policy, legal problems associated with standard-setting organizations, open-source software development, the Justice Department’s antitrust suit against Microsoft, rules governing website access, patent misuse, the scope of copyright law and the relationship between copyright and free speech policy.
Professor McGowan received his J.D. from Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California at Berkeley, in 1990. At Boalt he was a member of the Order of the Coif, recipient of the prize for best student publication, an associate editor of the California Law Review, and a member of the national moot court team. After graduation he served as a law clerk to the Hon. A. Raymond Randolph of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Professor McGowan then practiced in San Francisco with Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Howard, Rice, Nemerovski, Canady, Falk & Rabkin, where he was elected a director shortly before moving to academe. From 1998 to 2005 Professor McGowan taught at the University of Minnesota School of law, where he became a full professor in 2004.