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Flexibility in the implementation of intellectual property rights in agricultural biotechnology

  • Michel Trommetter


In this paper I discuss the fact that economists define optimal IP rights as a continuum of options in three dimensions: height, breadth and length. At the operational level we see the impossibility of multiplying rights indefinitely (due to prohibitive transaction costs), as well as the use of a limited number of IP tools which have led to the implementation of flexibilities. These flexibilities are designed to limit certain perverse effects of rights ill-adjusted to the characteristics of some economic sectors (agricultural biotechnologies, pharmacy, etc.). In this context, I analyse how these flexibilities are implemented in TRIPS and TRIPS+ agreements and I study the consequences for Developing Countries.

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Article provided by Springer in its journal European Journal of Law and Economics.

Volume (Year): 30 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (December)
Pages: 223-245

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Handle: RePEc:kap:ejlwec:v:30:y:2010:i:3:p:223-245
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  1. Langinier, Corinne & Moschini, GianCarlo, 2002. "Economics of Patents: An Overview, The," Staff General Research Papers 2061, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  2. repec:cep:stitep:/2004/478 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Bhattacharya, S. & Glazer, J. & Sappington, D., 1991. "Licensing and the Sharing of Knowledge in Research Joint Ventures," Papers 9120, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  4. Carl Shapiro, 2001. "Navigating the Patent Thicket: Cross Licenses, Patent Pools, and Standard Setting," NBER Chapters, in: Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 1, pages 119-150 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Etienne Billette de Villemeur & Bruno Versaevel, 2002. "From Private to Public Common Agency," Cahiers de recherche 02-06, HEC Montréal, Institut d'économie appliquée.
  6. Trommetter, M., 2004. "Biodiversity and international stakes : a question of access," Working Papers 200418, Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory (GAEL).
  7. Forero-Pineda, Clemente, 2006. "The impact of stronger intellectual property rights on science and technology in developing countries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 808-824, July.
  8. S. Narayan, 2009. "India," Chapters, in: The Political Economy of Trade Reform in Emerging Markets, chapter 7 Edward Elgar.
  9. Lerner, Josh & Tirole, Jean, 2003. "Efficient Patent Pools," IDEI Working Papers 211, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  10. Suzanne Scotchmer, 1991. "Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: Cumulative Research and the Patent Law," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 29-41, Winter.
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