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The Roles of Non-State Actors in Lawmaking within the Global Intellectual Property Regimes of WIPO and TRIPs

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Abstract Non-State actors (NSAs), including business and industry non-governmental organizations (NGOs), lawyers’ NGOs and executives of multinational corporations, have played important roles in shaping international law regulating legal monopolies of intangible interests as intellectual property (IP) rights (IPR). The two global IPR regimes (GIPRRs), the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) and Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs), have emphasized protection of such interests. Civil society NGOs (CS-NGOs) have increasingly engaged with these institutions, adding new dimensions to IP discourse. This paper investigates NSA involvement in developing the concept of IP and the GIPRRs themselves and contemporary NSA participatory rights and practices in both regimes. It offers a normative analysis of the future outlook of NSA influence, including potential impacts of increasing CS-NGO participation, assimilation of UN values, and influence of the history of IPR on the development and applicability of the concept of ‘public participation’ to the GIPRRs.

Affiliations: 1: British Institute of International and Comparative Law London UK barbarakwoodward@aol.com

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