Unlimited Potential: The Innovation Renaissance Is Now 05/02/2015 by Intellectual Property Watch, Intellectual Property Watch 2 Comments 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 views expressed in this article are solely those of the authors and are not associated with Intellectual Property Watch. IP-Watch expressly disclaims and refuses any responsibility or liability for the content, style or form of any posts made to this forum, which remain solely the responsibility of their authors. By Patrick Kilbride At no other time in history has humanity enjoyed such a boundless period of innovation. The human experience is literally changing day-to-day as new medicines and new technologies create solutions to seemingly insurmountable global challenges such as poverty, hunger, disease, and climate change. This 21st century innovation renaissance could not be more timely, and to overcome humanity’s shared challenges it must be sustained. Underpinning this renaissance is a burgeoning framework of intellectual property (IP) laws that ensure the conditions are present for innovators to invest in research and bring new products to market successfully. Until now, these conditions have been available in only a few highly developed markets, where investment by innovative industries has been concentrated. The priority for global leaders today should be to expand the circle and put a global IP framework in place to unleash the unlimited innovative potential of all the world’s citizens. Helping policy makers and industry alike to assess the conditions for innovation in key markets around the world, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC) has developed the International IP Index, a roadmap to the creation of a robust global IP environment. Now in its third edition, the International IP Index, UP: Unlimited Potential, ranks 30 economies—totaling nearly 80 percent of global GDP—on their commitment to innovation through IP. The GIPC Index measures 30 criteria across six categories essential to an innovative economy, such as patent, copyright, trademark and trade secrets protections, engagement in international treaties, and enforcement mechanisms. The factors evaluated in the Index are indicative of a strong IP environment that facilitates economic investment, fosters innovation, and stimulates job creation. Bringing complex innovative products to market requires capital-intensive research, testing, and development; the Index helps businesses to decide, where, when, and how much they can securely invest to bring those products to market. The good news is that similar to the rate of innovative development, the GIPC Index found that global IP systems were also ascendant in 2015. Notably, 20 of the 25 economies that were studied in both the 2014 and 2015 Index had improved their rankings. Among them was India, long considered an outlier on international IP norms. In the 2015 GIPC Index, India ranked 29 out of the 30 featured countries, which represents an improvement from the previous two editions—where India ranked last. While the overall environment for IP in India remains very poor—especially for patent holders facing India’s uniquely restrictive patentability requirements—the decline appears to have stabilized and there are reasons to be optimistic about the future. Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi was elected, a number of announcements have sent signals to industry that India is ready to re-examine its commitment to IP. The recently released draft national IPR policy, which included an explicit recognition of the importance of intellectual property to innovation, was one such signal. These actions, coupled with the creation of a bilateral, high-level IP Working Group as part of the re-launched U.S.-India Trade Policy Forum, may be a sign of a new era of innovation in India. Likewise, Canada also took steps to improve its innovative environment in 2014, particularly in the copyright space. Canada acceded to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Internet Treaties, and saw a slight drop in rates of software piracy, according to the annual rankings of the Business Software Alliance. Further, the notice-and-notice provisions of Canada’s Copyright Modernization Act took effect as well. While industry believes that a notice-and-takedown system would create a more effective mechanism to combat online piracy, Canada’s efforts to ensure creative content is better protected online were a welcome step. However, innovation continues to face particular challenges in Canada’s patent sector, including through the continued application of a highly restrictive patent utility standard. Singapore—party to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and chair of the IP negotiating chapter—also further strengthened its IP framework in 2015. Singapore’s IP system already emphasizes strong protection of pharmaceutical patents and copyrights, and amendments to Singapore’s Copyright Act introduced additional measures to provide rights holders with exclusive rights online in order to combat content theft. As Singapore strives to become the “IP hub” of Southeast Asia, industry look forwards to working with their policy leaders and negotiators to ensure that Singapore’s IP protection continue to grow in order to keep pace with their rapidly growing innovative environment. India, Canada, and Singapore are just three examples of economies that improved their IP systems over the last year, but they are not alone. Brazil, Japan, Mexico, and New Zealand, among others, all saw, an increase in their GIPC Index score. As additional economies follow suit, we can hope to continue to harness the unlimited potential for innovation made possible by robust IP protections. With a strong, global IP environment that catalyzes the innovative capacity of all the world’s citizens, the innovation renaissance can continue and shape a safe, prosperous future for all of us. Visit www.theglobalIPcenter.com/gipcindex to read more about the 30 countries examined in this year’s GIPC Index. Patrick Kilbride is Executive Director of International Intellectual Property at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’ Global intellectual Property Center. 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 Intellectual Property Watch may be reached at email@example.com."Unlimited Potential: The Innovation Renaissance Is Now" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.