Harnessing Intellectual Property Rights for Development Objectives: The Double Role of IPRs in the Context of Facilitating MDGs Nos. 1 and 6by Bernard Maister, Caspar van Woensel, Julian Barungi, Bram de Jonge
Poor management of intellectual property rights and the system of intellectual property rights itself hinder equal research partnerships between the South and the North, and often result in an over-cautious or one-sided Northern investment policy and unnecessary delays in the realization of some of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Central to this report is the double role of intellectual property rights - also referred to in terms like 'protecting legitimate economic interests' versus (or alongside) 'the need to contribute to worldwide development from the perspective of sharing global public goods', including knowledge. This report is the result of a research project - funded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and NWO-WOTRO Science for Global Development - on the role of intellectual property rights in realizing some of the MDGs. The emphasis is on issues in the field of access to food and to medicines and on the larger discussions on the present global and regional systems of intellectual property rights.
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