Innovation and Creativity in the Future of Intellectual Property (IP)

World Intellectual Property Day is celebrated on April 26. The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) emphasizes: "To build our common future and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we must rethink how we live, work and play"[1] ·

The SDGs were launched by the United Nations (UN) in 2015 with the aim to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that everyone enjoys peace and prosperity by 2030.

IP can help drive innovative and creative solutions to create a viable future for all. By aligning with the SDGs, we can harness the potential of innovation and creativity to address social, economic, and environmental challenges in a sustainable way. Below, we share some actions that can be useful to achieve this:

  1. Encourage Sustainable Innovation: Promote IP protection to incentivize innovation in clean technologies, renewable energy, sustainable agriculture, health, and education. This can directly contribute to SDG 7 (Affordable and clean energy) and SDG 9 (Industry, innovation and infrastructure).

  2. Equitable Access to Technology: Use IP to ensure that the technology needed to achieve the SDGs is available and accessible to all, especially in developing countries. This could include licensing at affordable prices or promoting technology transfer agreements. SDG 10 (Reduce inequalities within and between countries) can be addressed in this context.

  3. Supporting Local IP: Encourage the creation and protection of local IP in developing countries to spur economic growth and domestic innovation. This can strengthen local capacity to address specific development challenges and promote long-term sustainable development, including SDG 8 (Decent work and economic growth).

  4. Fostering Collaboration and Technology Transfer: Incentivize collaboration between businesses, research institutions and governments to share knowledge, technologies, and resources in key areas for the SDGs. This can help accelerate progress on targets such as SDG 3 (Health and well-being) and SDG 4 (Quality education).

  5. Protection of Traditional Knowledge and Genetic Resources: Recognize and protect traditional knowledge and genetic resources through appropriate IP systems, respecting the rights of indigenous and local communities. This is in line with SDG 15 (Life of terrestrial ecosystems) and SDG 13 (Climate action).

Integrating IP into the sustainable development agenda can harness its capacity to drive innovation, technology and economic growth in a way that is compatible with environmental conservation and long-term social well-being.



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