Beyond Theories: The Intellectual Property Dynamic in the Global Knowledge Economy

This Article critically examines the inadequacy of theoretical postulates on intellectual property. It acknowledges that theorizing around intellectual property is an important ongoing but elusive intellectual adventure that is critical for law and policy direction on intellectual property. Perhaps, at no time is this fact more obvious than in the extant post-industrial epoch or the era of Global Knowledge Economy (“GKE”). The latter is spurred by advances in bio- and digital technologies. Both phenomena drive significant shift and transition in intellectual property jurisprudence and in the tide of innovation from physical to life sciences. They also supervise implosions in new and complex domains or sites for knowledge and information generation. As its feature, the global knowledge economic order is undergirded by an institutional and structural shift in international intellectual property lawmaking and governance, provoking a serendipitous counter-regime dynamic in diverse sites for contestations around intellectual property. The pivotal role of intellectual property in the GKE presents intellectual property as an increasingly multidisciplinary subject with complex issue linkages in virtually all fronts, including public health, human rights, biodiversity, biotechnology, biopiracy, the environment, ethics, culture, indigenous knowledge, electronic commerce, and research ethos. Overall, these and many more issue linkages to intellectual property are part of the latter’s open-ended dynamics in the GKE. They are constitutive of a myriad of factors that task and shape policy and theory on intellectual property as the knowledge economy continues to unravel.

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Beyond Theories: The Intellectual Property Dynamic in the Global Knowledge Economy (2009) 9 Wake Forest Intellectual Property Law Journal 104-154.

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