Intellectual Property Law and Post-Scarcity Society

13 Pages Posted: 24 Dec 2019

See all articles by Barton Beebe

Barton Beebe

New York University School of Law

Date Written: 2019


Rapid technological progress has shifted discussion of the possibility of "post-scarcity society" from science fiction novels and utopian manifestoes to the pages of our newspapers and now to our law reviews. Commentators imagine a world in which three-dimensional printing, advanced robotics, synthetic biology, and artificial intelligence will enable the low-cost at-home manufacture of nearly all commodities and provision of nearly all services. This lecture considers the implications of postscarcity society for law and specifically for intellectual property law. It focuses on the likely social role of intellectual property law in a post-scarcity society and on the ways in which intellectual property law will likely work to undermine the socially progressive promise of post-scarcity.

Suggested Citation

Beebe, Barton, Intellectual Property Law and Post-Scarcity Society (2019). Singapore Journal of Legal Studies, Sept 2019, pp 377-389, Available at SSRN:

Barton Beebe (Contact Author)

New York University School of Law ( email )

40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

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