The World Trade Organization, the TRIPS Agreement and Traditional Knowledge

Draft published in Matthew Rimmer (ed), Indigenous Intellectual Property: A Handbook of Contemporary Research (Edward Elgar, UK, 2015) 64-82.

17 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2017

See all articles by Tania Voon

Tania Voon

University of Melbourne - Law School

Date Written: March 31, 2013

Abstract

This chapter addresses the role of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and its Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS Agreement) in the protection of ‘traditional knowledge’, which arises predominantly but not exclusively in developing countries and frequently involves indigenous communities. The definition of traditional knowledge remains contested. Although traditional knowledge is partially protected under certain existing legal mechanisms, and no insurmountable barrier exists to further protection, its particular characteristics are likely to require a dedicated solution in the future, which remains some way off.

Keywords: WTO, intellectual property, traditional knowledge, indigenous people, developing countries

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Voon, Tania, The World Trade Organization, the TRIPS Agreement and Traditional Knowledge (March 31, 2013). Draft published in Matthew Rimmer (ed), Indigenous Intellectual Property: A Handbook of Contemporary Research (Edward Elgar, UK, 2015) 64-82.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3093524

Tania Voon (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia

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