Two senior China-related positions involving, to different degrees, intellectual property have recently opened in the US Government.
A position similar to the one I helped create at the US Patent and Trademark Office is now open. The incumbent will serve as “Senior Counsel for China Intellectual Property Policy.” The position closes on August 6, 2018. Applicants must be US Citizens, graduated from an accredited law school, and be a member of the bar. PTO is seeking someone who has “Knowledge of a wide variety of international matters, particularly issues related to China IP and civil law matters.” The introduction of knowledge of “civil law” seems new to me. The position is also subject to a chain of command of “assist[ing] the Under Secretary of Commerce and Director, Deputy Under Secretary and Deputy Director, Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs of OPIA, the Deputy Chief Policy Officer of OPIA, and others by rendering advisory legal and technical opinions on a wide range of complex China IP issues and sensitive negotiations.”
Another position that has opened is that of Director, Center for Interagency Trade, Implementation, Monitoring, and Enforcement (ICTIME) and is responsible for supervising, directing, and implementing initiatives required by Section 604 of the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015. The position includes overseeing investigations of information for potential disputes brought by USTR to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and developing positions and strategies for implementation and enforcement of U.S. trade rights under international trade agreements for enforcement of domestic trade laws. This appears to be the Trade Enforcement unit first proposed by President Obama in a State of the Union Address in January 2012: “It’s not right when another country lets our movies, music, and software be pirated,” Obama said: “Tonight, I’m announcing the creation of a Trade Enforcement Unit that will be charged with investigating unfair trade practices in countries like China.” As a side note, it is interesting to observe how much the focus of USG trade policy has since shifted to technology issues, as indicated by this focus of then-President Obama. The position closes on July 23, 2018. This announcement also seeks someone who is capable of the various management competencies of the Senior Executive Service.
Neither position explicitly requires a knowledge of Chinese language, although China is clearly a focus of them both. Both positions also entail management responsibilities. The USTR position includes “supervising 20 Trade Enforcement Analysts, detailees, interns, and other employees” while the PTO position involves “serv[ing] as the China team leader”.