WIPO Discusses New Field Projects On Women, Tourism, And The Software Sector 17/05/2018 by Damilola Adepeju for 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 ongoing 21st session of the World Intellectual Property Organization Committee on Development and IP this week considered a diverse set of three new project proposals. Canada, Mexico and the United States together, as well as Kenya, and Peru, proposed creative projects regarding the use of intellectual property for development related to women, tourism and gastronomy, as well as the software sector. Gastronomy of Peru Women in IP and Innovation The project proposal [pdf] by Canada, Mexico and the US focused on “Increasing the role of women in innovation and entrepreneurship and encouraging women in developing countries to use the intellectual property system.” This project theme comes after the 2018 World Intellectual Property Day (26 April) which also focused on increasing the role of women in innovation and creativity. The proposal highlighted that women around the world make significant contributions to economic, social and enterprise development; yet, women represent a minority as entrepreneurs even in developed countries. Hence, it emphasised the need for “more targeted services to help women inventors to receive assistance and support with respect to protecting and managing their IP, and more particularly patent rights,” and aims to use existing WIPO programmes in collaboration with existing national associations of women inventors and innovators. The project’s ultimate objective, according to the delegation of Canada, “is to strengthen the innovative capacity of beneficiary countries by increasing the participation of women inventors in their national innovation systems” and “this will be done by broadening women innovators’ knowledge and use of IP to protect and commercialise their inventions particularly patent rights to more targeted support and awareness programmes, access to mentorship and opportunity to network,” she said. Asked later about the timing of the proposal, the delegate told Intellectual Property Watch, “Why now? It’s 2018. It’s about time!” The project will: provide better understanding of problems faced by women inventors and innovators in using the IP systems to create IP-driven businesses, help identify mechanisms, existing structures and programmes to provide support to women inventors and innovators, create women innovator resource centres, establish or expand networks of women innovators and entrepreneurs, IP mentoring programmes as well as legal support programmes, and provide a toolkit as best practices to other countries to establish or expand similar innovator support programmes, she said. The project was supported by many delegations, namely Bulgaria, Switzerland, Korea, Lithuania, Chile, Côte d’Ivoire, Pakistan, Australia, Burkina Faso, Indonesia, Tunisia, and Morocco. However, the delegation of Morocco was curious regarding the methodology that will be used to select beneficiary countries for the project; the proposers of the project promised to make this information available at a later date. [Update: At press time, the committee approved this project, and a number of countries expressed interest in participating, according to sources.] Kenyan Software A project [pdf] was also proposed by Kenya on the enhancement of the use of intellectual property in the software sector in African countries. According to the delegation of Kenya, which presented the project, a great deal of software is available in the African region and youths are the biggest section of this region, they are also the ones using smartphones and creating applications that change the lives of the population. However, the benefits of these innovations are limited to youths because of lack of awareness and limited IP knowledge on protection of innovations. Hence, the project is targeted at young people in Africa. The delegation further demonstrated that the project will create IP innovations in hubs, develop outreach programmes on IP, examine measures of access to IP, and look at the possibility of using IP for collateral for credit. Countries supported the project proposal but highlighted the need for more clear, defined and detailed objectives, a list of activities, outcomes, beneficiaries, and stakeholders involved in the project, as well as information on the budget of the project. A revised project proposal is expected from Kenya, in consultation with the WIPO secretariat, at the next Committee session, expected in November. Peru’s Gastronomy and Tourism Focusing on developing tourism and gastronomy through intellectual property, Peru proposed a project [pdf] that aims to promote the use of IP in the tourism and gastronomy sectors. According to Peru, tourism generates significant revenue and Peru has different tourist destinations as well as age-old culture that attracts visitors to the country. Gastronomy is the second tourist attraction in Peru after the ancient city of Machu Picchu, which has led to economic and social development, hence the need to maintain these benefits. The delegate further explained that since the country is one of the world’s few “megadiverse” countries, the use of plant varieties, traditional knowledge, and appellations of origin is an important tool. The use of certification and certifying marks to recognise quality is equally significant. He also pointed out that the use of collective marks would help identify that certain inputs are from a certain community. It will help ensure quality and standards used by farmers and servers, and can protect traditional recipes of Peru, as well as cookbooks, films and the like, a Peruvian delegate told the committee meeting. The proposal demonstrates that the project will disseminate and raise awareness on tourism, gastronomy, and intellectual property, “develop a protocol that uses IP tools to link economic activities related to tourism and gastronomy to markets,” evaluate Peru’s institutional framework and develop as well as implement the traditional specialities guaranteed (TSG) regulations. The proposal was generally warmly received by member states. Lithuania for the European Union, Switzerland on behalf of Group B, and other delegations said they had only received the proposal shortly before the meeting, and would look forward to discussing it at the next CDIP meeting. Indonesia for the Asia-Pacific Group welcomed the proposal and sought more time to study it. Brazil welcomed it and called it “very promising.” Neighbouring Chile said it also has gastronomy and asked to know the associated costs for the project for the next meeting. The committee took note of the proposed project and requested Peru to present a revised version, after working with the WIPO secretariat, at the next CDIP. Feasibility of Audiovisual Sector Data Apart from new projects presented to the Committee, a feasibility study [pdf] on enhancing the collection of economic data on the audiovisual sector in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Morocco and Senegal was also presented by two independent consultants, Deirdre Kevin and Sahar Ali. The idea of the feasibility study, according to the presentation, emerged from the discovery of lack of data on the audiovisual sector when a project titled, “Strengthening and development of the audiovisual sector in Burkina Faso and certain African countries” was carried out in 2013. According to a report prepared by Kevin and Ali, the aim of the feasibility study was to “provide a set of conclusions and suggestions for potential next steps towards improving data collection in these countries.” The presentation also highlighted that availability of economic data helps the understanding of audiovisual market and its main players, helps to assess market revenues and positive economic contributions to the audiovisual sector, enables copyright policies to adapt and take into account new players and new modes of exploitation, as well as helps to evaluate the contribution of the audiovisual sector to GDP and employment for policymaking purposes. Countries supported the study and the Committee took note of the information contained in the study as well as agreed that further activities can be discussed at a later stage. IP, the Palette with Many Colours In the hallway of the CDIP meeting this week, one delegate painted a picture to Intellectual Property Watch of the diversity of ideas and spirit of the IP and development committee. “We always encourage countries to present” new project proposals, he said. “IP is a palette with so many colours,” one can bring proposals on gastronomy, women, and software. “You have to be creative and bold,” the delegate said, and “put yourself on the podium.” Participants recognised the amount of work that goes into preparing a project proposal, and he commented that the CDIP is “way more” than just long-winded discussions about broad concepts of development, and deadlock. Countries can bring projects, and discuss them with others. William New contributed to this report. 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) Related Damilola Adepeju may be reached at email@example.com."WIPO Discusses New Field Projects On Women, Tourism, And The Software Sector" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.