WIPO Ventures Into Global Debate On Climate Change

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The World Intellectual Property Organization is continuing its push to become involved in some of the biggest policy questions of the day with an international conference on climate change next week. This follows recent efforts on public health and food security.

On 11-12 July, WIPO’s conference will look into the role of innovation and technology in the development and dissemination of green technologies. In particular, discussion will focus on research and development public and private partnerships, policy environment, national production capabilities, access to markets, effective regulations, and intellectual property management.

It is not clear how WIPO will address the critical question in international climate negotiations of how to ensure patents are a boost to innovation while not also being a hindrance to developing country access to the resulting new technologies.

The contribution of intellectual property in the innovative process, and technology transfer will be explored during the conference, according to WIPO, which will bring together major stakeholders, such as industry, governments, and civil society.

Last month, WIPO stepped into another unfamiliar field and organised its first seminar on the use of intellectual property to enhance agricultural productivity (IPW, WIPO, 28 June 2011).

A WIPO committee also recently began working on issues of IP and public health (IPW, WIPO, 19 May 2011).

Catherine Saez may be reached at info@ip-watch.ch.

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