Elgar Law, Technology and Society series
Edited by Jessica C. Lai and Antoinette Maget Dominicé
Chapter 9: The negotiations in WIPO for international conventions on traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions
This chapter looks at the agitation surrounding the commodification of the knowledge and cultural expressions of traditional and indigenous peoples. One of the difficulties in fitting traditional knowledge and cultural expressions into the intellectual property paradigm is that traditional peoples do not distinguish between the tangible and intangible, but take a holistic view in which these concepts are merged, as is the past with the future. This has generated the argument that some other form of law might be more appropriate for its protection. These conceptual difficulties for intellectual property lawyers explains, in part, the tortured negotiations within WIPO’s Intergovernmental Committee (IGC) since its creation in 2000 concerning the formulation of international conventions to protect traditional knowledge and cultural expressions
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