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Contribution to Collected Edition

Intellectual Property Harmonization in the Name of Trade


Lamping,  Matthias
MPI for Innovation and Competition, Max Planck Society;

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Lamping, M. (2016). Intellectual Property Harmonization in the Name of Trade. In H. Ullrich, R. M. Hilty, M. Lamping, & J. Drexl (Eds.), TRIPS plus 20 - From Trade Rules to Market Principles (pp. 313-358). Berlin; Heidelberg: Springer.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0029-79C4-5
In order to enjoy credibility and acceptance among those involved, harmonization must be the outcome of a deliberative process with a defined goal, but without a predetermined solution. States need to be clear about the purpose of harmonization and the measures for achieving it; they need to agree about how to handle different needs, priorities and expectations; and they need to be prepared to accept compromises beyond their narrow self-interest. The TRIPS Agreement tells a different story. Countries have learned to live with it, but nobody is entirely happy. In order to make international law more inclusive and responsive to different socio-economic conditions and needs, the TRIPS Agreement needs to be reconceptualized as a market framework regulation that promotes competition and innovation but also allows states to regulate the use of intellectual property in ways that grow out of, and comply with, their own traditions and interests. This ultimately means that the marriage of convenience between trade and intellectual property may have to come to an end.