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Research Handbook on Intellectual Property and Geographical Indications

Research Handbook on Intellectual Property and Geographical Indications

Research Handbooks in Intellectual Property series

Edited by Dev S. Gangjee

Provenance matters like never before. Legal regimes regulating the use of Geographical Indications (GIs) protect commercially valuable signs on products – such as Darjeeling and Champagne – which signal the link to their regions of origin. Such regimes have been controversial for over a century. A rich, interdisciplinary work of scholarship, this Research Handbook explores the reasons for and consequences of GIs existing as a distinct category within intellectual property (IP) law. Historians, geographers, sociologists, economists and anthropologists join IP specialists to explore the distinguishing feature of GIs, that certain products are distinctively linked or anchored to specific places.

Chapter 5: Geographical Indications under WIPO-administered treaties

Matthijs Geuze

Subjects: business and management, knowledge management, innovation and technology, knowledge management, law - academic, intellectual property law


Whether geographical names or other denominations with a geographical connotation can be Geographical Indications (GIs) or Appellations of Origin (AOs) may be assessed differently from country to country. For example, the fact that some of these indications are protected as intellectual property rights in some jurisdictions, whereas in other jurisdictions they are considered as generic indications for a certain kind of product, has generated extensive debate for many years. This introductory section will outline WIPO’s longstanding engagement with these debates over several decades. More than a century ago, discussions between governments concerning the protection of GIs at the international level resulted in the incorporation of a number of provisions on the subject into the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property and in the conclusion of the Madrid Agreement for the Repression of False or Deceptive Indications of Source on Goods.

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