The Rise of China in the International Intellectual Property Regime
HANDBOOK ON THE INTERNATIONAL POLITICAL ECONOMY OF CHINA, Zeng Ka, ed., Edward Elgar Publishing, pp. 424-43, 2019
21 Pages Posted: 1 Aug 2018 Last revised: 10 Jan 2019
Date Written: August 1, 2018
The rise of China in the international arena has caught the attention of many – whether they are excited about the country's ascendancy or worried about its territorial ambitions. Voluminous literature now exists to cover the impact of China's rise on the international geopolitical and economic systems. One area that has not garnered much attention thus far is the impact of China's rise on the international intellectual property regime.
To examine this impact, the present chapter begins by revisiting the typology scholars have used to chart the progress a country has made in its engagement with international norms: (1) norm breaker; (2) norm taker; (3) norm shaker; and (4) norm maker. Although China has been widely considered a norm breaker or a norm taker in the intellectual property arena, it has now slowly taken on the roles of both a norm shaker and a norm maker.
This chapter then examines three notable developments that have enabled China to shape future international intellectual property norms: (1) the negotiation of free trade agreements; (2) the development of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership; and (3) the establishment of the Belt and Road Initiative. The chapter further explains why China has now assumed a more assertive role in the intellectual property arena. It concludes by identifying four sets of questions for future research.
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