Information for G01251
Protecting community rights over traditional knowledge: implications of customary laws and practices. Report of the planning workshop
The project will examine customary laws and practices relating to traditional knowledge and biological resources, to assist the development of appropriate mechanisms to protect the rights of indigenous and local communities over traditional knowledge. The two-day Planning Workshop brought together research teams from India, China, Peru, Panama and Kenya, as well as international researchers. Its main purpose was to develop a common vision and understanding of the project, and a coordinated approach. The workshop reviewed policy issues and challenges to be addressed, and different paradigms and approaches for TK protection. Participant's work and interests in TK protection The development of policies for TK protection has often been led by IPR experts, with limited participation of TK holders and attention to customary laws. In contrast, existing IPR laws have been developed in response to the demands of particular interest groups (plant breeders, biotechnology companies etc).
The current system of intellectual property rights is designed to promote commercial and scientific innovation. It offers little scope for protecting the knowledge rights of indigenous peoples, traditional farmers and healers, whose survival requires collective – not exclusive – access to new knowledge and innovations.
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Protecting community rights over traditional knowledge