Debates Around Indigenous Knowledge And Intellectual Property


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Debates Around Indigenous Knowledge And Intellectual Property

  1. 1. Kelebogile Komanyane M.Bibl 225821 ICT developments & applications in LIS
  2. 2. <ul><li>What is indigenous knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>What is intellectual property </li></ul><ul><li>Why protect indigenous knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Background of debates </li></ul><ul><li>What are the debates </li></ul><ul><li>How the debates helped the indigenous people. </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Tella (2007) refers to Indigenous knowledge (IK) as “unique, traditional, local knowledge existing within and developed around the specific conditions, indigenous to a particular geographic area”. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>World Intellectual Property Organisation (2009) defines “Intellectual property (IP) as creations of the mind: inventions, literary and artistic works, and symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce. Intellectual property is divided into two categories: Industrial property, which includes inventions (patents), trademarks, industrial designs, and geographic indications of source; and copyright, which includes literary and artistic works such as novels, poems and plays, films, musical works, artistic works such as drawings, paintings, photographs and sculptures, and architectural designs. The intellectual property is protected by the intellectual law to avoid misuse and duplicity of such intellectual property”. </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>To preserve & control heritage, so that the community could receive fair returns on what their communities have developed. </li></ul><ul><li>For many years developed countries have used and misused IK without acknowledging that they sourced the information from indigenous people. </li></ul><ul><li>To avoid depletion of environment </li></ul><ul><li>Prior to 1992 knowledge & biological resources of indigenous people were acquired for commercial use. </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>In 2000 WIPO member states established intergovernmental committee on intellectual property and generic resources, traditional knowledge and folklores. </li></ul><ul><li>IGC acts as a international forum for debate and dialogue concerning the interplay between intellectual property and generic resources, traditional knowledge and folklores. </li></ul><ul><li>The debates are normally between the developed countries and developing countries, civil societies and non-governmental organisations. </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Indigenous people feel the current ways of protecting intellectual property is limited in scope of recognising indigenous rights to indigenous people. </li></ul><ul><li>Patents do not recognise IK owners for their creativity and ingenuity. </li></ul><ul><li>Patents cannot protect IK because it is holistic in nature and its collectively owned. </li></ul><ul><li>Patents are commercially driven so they fail to cover non market purely spiritual, cultural environment, social and political issues. </li></ul><ul><li>Patents can be used by different communities across the world. </li></ul><ul><li>Patents have time frames which are not practical/or short to indigenous knowledge. </li></ul><ul><li>Use of confidential databases were suggested as a way of minimising misuse and also to preserve for younger generation. </li></ul><ul><li>The US officials strongly opposed to the use of confidential databases, as the said there are saying “there’s a trade secrets protection clause already in TRIPS. (Mara ,2008) </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Absence of additivity in innovation in IKS means that knowledge remains basic and cannot produce much micro-economic growth. </li></ul><ul><li>IK is static in nature because of the mechanism and incentives for sharing knowledge within IKS.( South African indigenous knowledge policy ,2006) </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>the debate on the relevance and appropriateness of the conventional Intellectual Property Right regime for Plant varieties, products based on knowledge of local communities and individual informal experts and use of local biodiversity even without use of associated knowledge system. </li></ul><ul><li>Intellectual Property Rights regimes for providing incentives to local communities and creative individuals are useless: </li></ul><ul><li>Grassroots investors cannot afford to hire patent attorneys. </li></ul><ul><li>There are no institutions in developing countries, set up to provide information about IPR. ( Gupta 2001 ) </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Since the knowledge of various plants has been developed over several generations, why should present generation be entitled to reap all the rewards if any? </li></ul><ul><li>Why should governments be entitled to any benefits from the commercialization of patented products when the resource and the knowledge were actually provided by individuals or communities? </li></ul><ul><li>While process patents can be provided, the product patents impede research, generate excessive monopoly to one or few inven­tors, make the technology or products out of reach of common people due to price increase, and discourage expertise of suc­cessful reverse engineering in third world”. (Gupta 2001) </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>These debates have helped the indigenous people to get recognition and to be treated fairly with regard to their indigenous knowledge. </li></ul><ul><li>They led to adoption of methods of protection like the sui generis which offers other mechanisms for regulating access to resource and equitable benefit sharing They also helped with amendment of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement (TRIPS) specifically in Article 29 to include the obligation to disclose the origin of genetic resources and associated TK in the patent system. </li></ul><ul><li>These debates have helped and motivated countries like South Africa to develop their own Indigenous knowledge system policy. </li></ul><ul><li>United Nations Educational Scientific Cultural Organisation (2005) through their “Social and Human Sciences Sector established a database on best practices relating to indigenous knowledge with a view of encouraging decision- makers and researchers to incorporate indigenous knowledge in their projects proposals and in all activities involving local communities”. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Indigenous Knowledge on Medicinal Plants, Village Barali Kass and its Allied Areas, District Kotli Azad Jammu &Kash
  13. 13. University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) has launched a degree for sangomas (in so-called Indigenous Knowledge Systems)
  14. 14. Solomon Islanders monitoring trochus populations as part of recent efforts by the World Wide Fund for Nature(WWF) to help prevent over-harvesting.
  15. 15. <ul><li>Gupta, A. 2001. Intellectual property, traditional knowledge and genetic resources conserving biodiversity and rewarding associated knowledge and innovation systems: honey bee perspective, international conference on intellectual property, the internet, electronic commerce and traditional knowledge. Boyana Government Residence, Sofia, May 29 to 31. </li></ul><ul><li>MARA , K. 2008. Indigenous Groups Express Concerns on IP Protection of Their Knowledge . [Weblog]. /about-ip/en/index.html .(9 August 2009). </li></ul><ul><li>MARA, K. 2009. Tribes to WIPO long term protection for traditional knowledge needed .[Video podcast]. . (24 August 2009). </li></ul><ul><li>Semali, L.M. & Kincheloe, J.L. Ed. (1999). what is indigenous knowledge? voice of the academy. London: Falmer Press </li></ul><ul><li>Simeone, T. 2004. Indigenous knowledge and Intellectual Property Rights. Library of Parliament- Parliamentary Information and Research services. </li></ul><ul><li>South Africa. 9 th session of the Intergovernmental committee on intellectual property and genetic resources, traditional knowledge and folklore. Geneva, 24-28 April 2006, 2006. WIPO. </li></ul><ul><li>Tella, R D. 2007. towards promotion and dissemination of indigenous knowledge: A case study of NIRD. The International Information & Library Review , 39(3): 185-193. </li></ul><ul><li>UNESCO. Exploring linkage between cultural diversity and biological diversity: expert meeting on safe guarding the transmission of local and indigenous knowledge of nature. Japan, 14-15 April 2005.2005 </li></ul><ul><li>United Nations Education Scientific Cultural Organisation. 2009. Symposium on the protection of traditional knowledge and expression of indigenous culture in the pacific islands. [Online]. Available Date visited 20 August 2009. </li></ul><ul><li>World Bank. 2000. Indeginous knowledge and Intellectual Property Rights. IK Notes no.19 </li></ul><ul><li>World Intellectual Property Organisation. 2009. Definition of Intellectual Property. [Online]. Available . Date visited 21 August 2009. </li></ul><ul><li>World Trade Organisation. 2009. Agreement of trade-related aspects of intellectual property right. [Online]. Available . Date visited 21 August 2009. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>