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Can Certain Intellectual Property Rights both Protect and Promote Unique Traditional Products and Cultural Heritage from Developing Countries for Economic Benefit? The Case of Georgia

Listed author(s):
  • Patrick Martens

    (Maastricht University)

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    This paper is focused on traditional products that include agricultural goods such as wines, spirits and cheeses as well as tangible and intangible cultural heritage and sometimes linked to the manufacture of the product. The aims are: firstly to assess the current context of International Economic Law (IEL) and how Georgia is using IEL legal frameworks to protect its traditional products and heritage; secondly, how effectively its own national treatment and policy environment are functioning; and finally, to make preliminary observations and arguments on the impact and potential of Intellectual Property (IP) systems, Geographical Indications (GIs), Traditional Knowledge (TK), Traditional Cultural Expressions (TCE) and Genetic Resources (GR), on the economic development of regions and communities. The local-global dynamic of IEL is contrasted with Georgia‟s own economic and developmental realities. Against this backdrop, the question emerges as to whether the relevant Intellectual Property (IP) systems can not only provide the necessary „defensive‟ legal protection against misappropriation, misuse, theft and bio-piracy, but also support „positive protection‟ – meaning incentives and opportunities for technological innovation, entrepreneurial endeavor and community development. The main conclusion is that is that the positive aspects of protection need more policy development and action.

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    File Function: First version, 2013
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    Paper provided by Maastricht School of Management in its series Working Papers with number 2013/14.

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    Length: 15 pages
    Date of creation: Jun 2013
    Handle: RePEc:msm:wpaper:2013/14
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    1. Thomas Cottier & Marion Panizzon, 2004. "Legal Perspectives On Traditional Knowledge: The Case For Intellectual Property Protection," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(2), pages 371-399, June.
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