One of the prime movers behind the establishment of the European Patent Convention
IP Hall of Fame inductee in 2006
Härtel was president of the German Patent Office at a time when the European Patent Convention was under discussion; he played a leading role in ensuring that the convention became a reality. He was the driving force behind both the Munich and the Luxembourg Patent Conventions, negotiating (among others) on behalf of the Federal Republic of Germany to get those treaties in place. Before becoming President of the German Patent Office in 1963, he spent many years working within the German Ministry of Justice.