Access to vs. exclusion from knowledge: Intellectual property, efficiency and social justice
The main rationale for intellectual property relies on the thesis of the incentive to create. Creators and inventors are economic agents attracted by the returns they expect from their effort. This depiction is practical, but does not give due weight to the complexity of knowledge production. This work does not contest the potential benefit of the opportunity for creators and inventors to reap some profit from their work. Rather, it considers the idiosyncratic nature of knowledge, which is simultaneously input, output and productive technology, and is closely linked to the social dimension. This provides further insight into the production process and suggests a significantly different framework for policy. More specifically, because of the increasing returns governing creative technology, the efficiency criterion used to guide the economic choice calls for weak intellectual property rights, thus preserving wide access to knowledge. A stronger appropriation regime would significantly impair the total outcome of the creative processes. Interestingly, this appears to apply equally from a social justice perspective, perhaps in an effortless solution to the age-old trade-off between economic efficiency and social justice.
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- F. M. Scherer, 2004. "A Note on Global Welfare in Pharmaceutical Patenting," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(7), pages 1127-1142, 07.
- Giovanni B. Ramello, 2005. "Private appropriability and sharing of knowledge: convergence or contradiction? The opposite tragedy of the creative commons," Chapters, in: Developments in the Economics of Copyright, chapter 7 Edward Elgar Publishing.
- Ramello Giovanni B., 2005.
"Intellectual Property and the Markets of Ideas,"
Review of Network Economics,
De Gruyter, vol. 4(2), pages 1-20, June.
- Paul M Romer, 1999.
"Endogenous Technological Change,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
2135, David K. Levine.
- Martin L. Weitzman, 1998.
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 113(2), pages 331-360.
- Martin L. Weitzman, 1995. "Recombinant Growth," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1722, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Weitzman, Martin L., 1998. "Recombinant Growth," Scholarly Articles 3708468, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Julia Porter Liebeskind & Amalya Lumerman Oliver & Lynne G. Zucker & Marilynn B. Brewer, 1995. "Social Networks, Learning, and Flexibility: Sourcing Scientific Knowledge in New Biotechnology Firms," NBER Working Papers 5320, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Landes, William M & Posner, Richard A, 1989. "An Economic Analysis of Copyright Law," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 325-63, June.
- Bentham, Jeremy, 1843. "A Manual of Political Economy," History of Economic Thought Books, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, number bentham1843.
- Takii, Katsuya, 2000.
"A barrier to the diffusion of tacit knowledge,"
Economics Discussion Papers
9989, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
- Sen, Amartya, 1988. "Property and Hunger," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 4(01), pages 57-68, April.
- Richard N. Langlois, 2000. "Knowledge, Consumption, and Endogenous Growth," Working papers 2000-02, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
- Giovanni B. Ramello, 2005. "Property rights, firm boundaries, and the republic of science--A note on Ashish Arora and Robert Merges," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(6), pages 1195-1204, December.
- Kenneth Carlaw & Les Oxley & Paul Walker & David Thorns & Michael Nuth, 2006. "BEYOND THE HYPE: INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND THE KNOWLEDGE SOCIETY/KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(4), pages 633-690, 09.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uca:ucapdv:90. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Lucia Padovani)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.