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The Global Challenge of Intellectual Property Rights

The Global Challenge of Intellectual Property Rights

Edited by Robert Bird and Subhash C. Jain

The importance of intellectual property rights is now well established as a vital component in the success of firms and of nations. The diverse contributors to this volume, drawn from the fields of law, business and economics, clarify and analyze the problems and promise of IP policy from a global perspective. They discuss both developed and emerging nations and advance the understanding of this increasingly important topic.

Chapter 12: The Vulnerability of Middle Developed Countries to Changes in Foreign Investment Arising from Intellectual Property Appropriation

Robert C. Bird and Daniel R. Cahoy

Subjects: business and management, international business


12. The vulnerability of middle developed countries to changes in foreign direct investment arising from intellectual property appropriation Robert C. Bird* and Daniel R. Cahoy** INTRODUCTION Intellectual property has become an increasingly important facet of global commerce. It is hard to imagine a negotiation concerning trade between nations that does not address the protection or use of these key property rights. Whether the issue is piracy, investment or development, both the developed and developing worlds now recognize a significant interest in designing functional intellectual property systems. Significantly, beliefs regarding the appropriate degree of intellectual property rights are not universally shared among nations. Industrialized nations – generally in control of the most valuable IP assets – view strong, dependable protection as a cornerstone to an efficient global business environment. Developing nations may share these ideals to a great degree, but many see the additional need for significant limitations in order to promote local interests, such as health care. This difference of opinion can lead to significant conflict. The most studied aspect of developed–developing nation conflict in intellectual property rights protection has been in its effect on innovation. However, a secondary effect involving foreign direct investment may be more important for its ability to influence the debate. In particular, a firm’s reduction in foreign direct investment in response to a relaxation of intellectual property rights is a function that can have dramatic effects in some countries, but not others. The most...

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