Research Handbooks in Intellectual Property series
Edited by Dev S. Gangjee
Chapter 17: From terroir to pangkarra: Geographical Indications of origin and Indigenous knowledge
There has been a marked increase over the last few decades or so in the number of countries which recognise and protect Geographical Indications of origin (GIs). There has also been a steady expansion in the types of things that are protected. While this is not that surprising given the growing interest in slow food and traditional products, what is more surprising, at least at first glance, is the increased attention that has been given to the potential use of GIs to support and promote Indigenous interests. GIs have been associated with Indigenous traditional knowledge in two ways. Firstly, it has been suggested that they could be used as a mechanism to protect and sustain Indigenous interests. This is because, as the WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore noted, some traditional cultural expressions may qualify as goods which could be protected by geographical indications. Secondly, and more ambitiously, it has also been suggested that the regimes used to regulate GIs might be used as a template on which sui generis schemes to protect Indigenous knowledge might be modelled.
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