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The Protection of Traditional Knowledge within WTO Legal Frame: (Again) a TRIPs Failure?

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Zappalaglio, A. (2014). The Protection of Traditional Knowledge within WTO Legal Frame: (Again) a TRIPs Failure?


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0002-8850-A
Abstract
The present paper is aimed at sharing my sceptical views concerning the future of the TRIPs Agreement and its ability to provide solutions to the current challenges in the field of International Intellectual Property Law (IIP). In particular, this analysis will focus on the failure to provide protection for Traditional Knowledge (TK) through the law of Geographical Indications (GIs). It will be argued that TRIPs was not drafted with the intention of starting a new course in the history of IP law by reconciling the needs of IP exporters with those of countries without an IP tradition. As a result, we have an unbalanced system that is impossible to reform and incapable of playing a role in the protection of TK. Currently, the principal occupation of an IIP specialist is not to understand how to reform the TRIPs, but rather how to bypass it. Thus, it will be suggested that informal norms, whose importance is increasing in modern international law, can play an interesting role in the IIP field as well.