WIPO Development Committee Opens With Focus On SDGs, Tech Transfer, New Projects 14/05/2018 by Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch Leave a Comment Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The World Intellectual Property Organization Committee on Development and Intellectual Property opened today with an agenda of issues such as the development dimension of IP, technology transfer, and how WIPO can participate in the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Meanwhile, new development projects proposed for WIPO work would focus on women, software, and tourism. New CDIP Chair Amb. Hasan Kleib of Indonesia The 21st session of the WIPO Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) is taking place from 14 – 18 May. Delegates are expected to address WIPO’s participation in the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the year 2030, what work programme should be designed under a new agenda item on IP and development, and how to implement recommendations of an expert group on WIPO’s implementation of its own Development Agenda recommendations. Also in discussion this week: a proposal by the African Group for WIPO to hold a biennial international conference on IP and development, a number of evaluation reports on development projects, and three new project proposals. In response to a request made at the last CDIP session, in November, four proposals were submitted by member states on potential subjects to be discussed under a new agenda item on IP and development (IPW, WIPO, 11 December 2017). After years of disagreement, member states agreed at the last WIPO General Assembly last October to add this standing item on the CDIP agenda. New Projects Three new projects have been submitted by a countries to be evaluated by the CDIP this week. One is a Project Proposal [pdf] from Canada, Mexico and the United States on Increasing the Role of Women in Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Encouraging Women in Developing Countries to Use the Intellectual Property System. The second one is a Project [pdf] on Enhancing the Use of IP in the Software Sector in African Countries, proposed by Kenya, and the third is a project [pdf] on Intellectual Property, Tourism and Gastronomy in Peru: Promoting the Development of Tourism and Gastronomy in Peru through Intellectual Property, proposed by Peru. New Agenda Item Open for Ideas The question is now which kind of issues should be discussed under this agenda item. Group B developed countries, Mexico, Brazil, and Russia have submitted their ideas, which WIPO compiled [pdf] for this session of the CDIP. Group B (the grouping of developed countries) suggested discussions on: the role of technology commercialisation in promoting development, and the role of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in fostering innovation. The group also proposed to talk about the key elements of an effective IP system that are beneficial for the economic, cultural and social development. They also proposed a study on women in IP and how to encourage and promote the usage of IP system by women in developing and least developed countries. Mexico said IP and development “should be discussed on the basis of a cross-cutting focus that should take into account the advantages that the IP system brings to innovation, development and research.” Mexico suggested the sharing of experiences in the deployment of SDG Goal 9 (Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation) by member states and by WIPO. As an example, the submission mentioned a focus on “areas in which IP has a positive impact on the fight against poverty, economic development, health, education…” The Brazilian submission underlined the importance of the knowledge and understanding of jurisprudence and caselaw, and the difficulty finding publications “describing countries’ practical experiences in the design and implementation of well-functioning IP policies” in developing countries. Brazil suggested that member states share successful experiences “in making IP policies work for development.” Brazil also highlighted the complex relationship between IP and innovation and economic development, and called for member states to gain a better understanding of the “circumstances in which a well-designed IP system can contribute to innovation and creativity in general.” Russia proposed to organise “discussion sessions or workshops with participation of experts from WIPO and Member States to exchange experience and best practices of new technologies use (Blockchain, BigData, Artificial Intelligence etc.) as well as experience of modernizing legislature concerning use of IP in the digital environment taking into account legal and technical aspects.” Recommendations of Independent Review Pending Most of the recommendations contained in a 2016 report [pdf] of an independent group of expert’s of the implementation of the WIPO Development Agenda Recommendations were adopted by the CDIP. Two of those recommendations, however, did not meet the approval of the committee: Recommendation 5, suggesting that WIPO considers linking Development Agenda Recommendations (DARs) to expected results contained in the Program and Budget; and Recommendation 11, calling for a mechanism to be set up to report on the agreed recommendations contained in the evaluation reports and on the mainstreamed outcomes of the Development Agenda projects. The two recommendations are expected to be discussed this week, and a video conference has been organised for 16 May, according to a tentative work programme [pdf] for the week, with the lead evaluator of the Independent Review to clarify recommendations 5 and 11. Separately, members were asked to provide inputs on how to implement the adopted recommendations of the Independent Review, which were compiled [pdf] by the WIPO secretariat for this session of the CDIP. Switzerland on behalf of Group B, Mexico, and Peru, provided inputs. Delegates are also expected to deliver their comments on the annual Director General’s Report [pdf] on the Implementation of the Development Agenda. SDG Standing Item Not Supported by All WIPO, as a specialised UN agency, is bound to participate in the achievement of the 2015 SDGs. In October 2016, Brazil proposed [pdf] that a standing item on SDGs be added to the CDIP agenda. This was opposed by some developed countries. Today, Brazil reiterated its proposal, and said a standing agenda item would allow for more transparency, focus and accountability by WIPO. The proposal was supported by a majority of countries in previous sessions, the Brazilian delegate said. This morning some other countries, such as Pakistan, supported the Brazilian proposal. On a separate issue, some developing countries, such as Ecuador for the Group of Latin American and Caribbean countries (GRULAC), and Morocco on behalf of the African Group, would like that WIPO be accountable on its participation to all the SDGs. Some others, such as Group B, find that the attention should focus on specific ones directly related to the work of WIPO. Delegates this week will discuss a WIPO report [pdf] on WIPO’s contribution to the implementation of the SDGs. Technical Assistance, Technology Transfer A number of developing countries at the opening of the session underlined the importance of technical assistance and technology transfer. In particular, Morocco for the African Group said the CDIP should make more efforts to make technical assistance and capacity building more accessible to member states. During the week, delegates are expected to discuss several documents relating to those issues: the Compilation [pdf] of WIPO’s Existing Practices, Methodologies and Tools for Providing Technical Assistance; a Gap Analysis [pdf] of WIPO’s Existing Technology Transfer Services and Activities in Respect of the WIPO Development Agenda “Cluster C” Recommendations; and a Costing [pdf] of Roadmap on Promoting the Usage of the Web Forum Established under the “Project on Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer: Common Challenges – Building Solutions.” WIPO also has tabled a document [pdf[, after the request of member states, on WIPO’S Practices for the Selection of Consultants for Technical Assistance. Studies, Report Delegates also are expected to consider a number of study summaries: Summary [pdf] of the Study on Enhancing Innovation in the Agri-Food Sector in Uganda: Sector Studies on Robusta Coffee Planting Material and Tropical Fruit Processing; a summary [pdf] of the Study on the Use of Intellectual Property in Chile, and a summary [pdf] of the Study on “Intellectual Property: A Mechanism for Strengthening Provincial Identity within the Framework of the Imbabura Geopark Project.” Also on the agenda [pdf] is a Feasibility Study [pdf] on Enhancing the Collection of Economic Data on the Audiovisual Sector in a Number of African Countries. The CDIP is called to consider an Evaluation Report [pdf] of the Project on Capacity-Building in the Use of Appropriate Technology Specific Technical and Scientific Information as a Solution for Identified Development Challenges – Phase II International Conference on IP and Development The African Group tabled a proposal in May 2017 to organise a biennial international conference on IP and development. The proposal was revised [pdf] and tabled again in November 2017. This morning, a number of countries, such as Indonesia for the Asia and Pacific Group, expressed support for the holding of this biennial conference. 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