Edited by Paul Nihoul and Pieter Van Cleynenbreugel
The aim of this ending chapter is to present a structured summary of the previous chapters and tie them together through lingering on some cross-chapter themes and contributions in view of the aims of the book. Some of the main themes in this book at macro-level will moreover be tied into a previous book of mine 20 years back (as of April 2018) on the rise of intellectual capitalism and the economics and management of IP at micro-level. The chapter will end with a final plea for transnational technology and innovation governance in light of the crucial roles of new technologies and innovations and for global challenges and welfare. The general aim of this book has been to present a research-based analysis of the linkages between R & D, patents, innovations, growth and welfare and thereby increase our knowledge about how R & D of new technologies and innovations can contribute to growth and ultimately to welfare in society. A corollary aim has then been to focus specifically on patents and their linkages since patent and IP issues have been somewhat disconnected in general from R & D, innovations and economic growth in studies and debate of the latter. A subsidiary aim has been to clarify and offer a number of key concepts, distinctions and models in an attempt to contribute to a professional language in the innovation policy and management area. A final aim of the book has been to contribute to research in the innovation and IP area by offering some answers to common research questions as well as offering methods and suggestions for further IP policy research.
Agustín Ruiz Robledo
This article analyses the European Court of Human Rights’ (ECtHR) doctrine on the right to free elections established in Article 3 of Protocol 1. What was initially a state obligation to hold elections eventually evolved into a genuine subjective right. The article aims to spell out the precise content of the right to free elections in Europe as stipulated by the ECtHR.
In recent years the question of the lawfulness of economic activities in occupied territories has emerged as a matter of significant debate in international law. A number of non-governmental organizations and scholars maintain that international law prohibits economic relations with occupying states and this extends to territories under their control. Still, the legal framework governing the lawfulness of such relations remains unclear. In light of this, the present contribution aims to explore the lawfulness, under international law, of economic dealings by third party private actors in territories under prolonged occupation. It is argued that, since corporations are not direct holders of international law obligations, the duties of non-recognition and non-assistance do not extend to their activities. Similarly, it is shown that the development of a law of individual criminal responsibility in international law has not yet been accompanied by a regime of corporate criminal responsibility, thereby affirming the absence of any formal international normative dimension of transnational corporate activity. In the light of the inadequacy of traditional legal instruments to regulate corporate activity in occupied territories, the article finally turns to one of the main soft-law instruments governing such activity, namely the 2011 UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). The article provides some concrete examples of how the UNGPs have been successful in dissuading companies from carrying out economic activities in the occupied Palestinian territories and in the occupied Western Sahara. The main argument advanced here is that, in the absence of a hard regulatory framework governing corporate activities, soft-law instruments, such as the UNGPs, show great potential in bringing about a change of corporate conduct towards occupied territories. More fundamentally, this practice will hopefully lead to the adoption of a hard instrument on the topic.