ATRIP Intellectual Property series
Edited by Graeme B. Dinwoodie
Chapter 11: PPPs in Global IP (Public–Private Partnerships in Global Intellectual Property)
Public–private partnerships (PPPs or P3s) specializing in development policy must contend with the highly intellectual property (IP)-intensive nature of knowledge production. Often produced in the European Union, North America and other developed country markets, IP-protected knowledge goods bear significant global distributional consequences. High uncertainty, risk and cost may be associated with research, development and commercialization of complex creations or innovations (hereinafter simply referred to as innovations), whether for industrialized or developing country sectors – thus these PPPs may respond to particular market failures in the production of these goods. Moreover, governments or intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) may lack sufficient resources to provide full material support or, importantly, distributional mechanisms for these innovations – thus these PPPs also may address government failures in the production and dissemination of public goods for key areas such as agriculture, education or public health. Pharmaceutical innovations, for example, are typically privatized through the exclusive rights provided by patents, associated know-how and drug safety regimes. Firms producing these kinds of innovations increasingly collaborate with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and IGOs via PPPs. PPPs thus address global disease burdens in neglected (typically developing country) markets. These recent solutions to market and government failures have been especially impactful in global health policy, resulting not only in macro changes to the treaty structure of the World Trade Organization (WTO) but also micro changes in the institutional structures of non-profit pharmaceutical patent owners, such as universities.
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