Mapping Prevailing Ideas on Intellectual Property
Preliminary Findings from a Survey
Issue Paper 38
Mapping Prevailing Ideas on Intellectual Property by Professor Jean-Frédéric Morin, Université libre de Bruxelles, examines an overlooked yet critical dimension of global IP governance: where do IP ideas and beliefs originate and how are they transmitted? This is the first empirical study that seeks to answer these questions presenting the findings of a survey completed by more than 1600 IP professionals, and drawing some policy-relevant implications.
In this regard, the study shows that IP debates, often pictured as opposing those holding anti-IP views in the South to those supporting pro-IP maximalist views in the North, are in reality more complex and nuanced. IP professionals appear loosely organized in transnational networks where professional affiliation is more important in shaping views on IP than country of birth.
The study also emphasizes the important role of higher education and capacity building in the transmission of IP ideas and beliefs. It finds that university education in a developed country is more likely to result in stronger support for a more balanced approach to IP protection and it suggests that capacity building programs might be more effective if they are supported by empirical evidence.
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