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Sustainability And Enclosure: Land, Intellectual Property And Biotechnology

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  • Runge, C. Ford

Abstract

The tension between enterprise as a means and sustainability as an end is directly related to the tension between rights to exclude others from a stream of private benefits and rights to be included in streams of environmental improvements. Resolving this tension is necessary if we are to square the circle between sustainability and enterprise. I begin for perspective with a brief review of the enclosure of land, and the widely cited notion of the Tragedy of the Commons. I then consider the modern version of the debate, surrounding informatics and, more specifically, intellectual property in plant genomics. The last part of the discussion focuses on a synthesis in which the two faces of enclosure - to be excluded and to be included - are brought together with democratic theory to give "sustainable enterprise" coherence and meaning.

Suggested Citation

  • Runge, C. Ford, 2004. "Sustainability And Enclosure: Land, Intellectual Property And Biotechnology," Working Papers 14464, University of Minnesota, Center for International Food and Agricultural Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:umciwp:14464
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    File URL: http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/14464/files/wp04-01.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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