Lecturer/Position/Organization: Prof. Fabio Marazzi, University of Bergamo
Session/Theme: Science and Law
Title of the presentation: The evolution of intellectual property landscape
The aim of science is a quest for knowledge, that has to be disseminated, shared, capitalised and Used Intellectual property is the results and outcomes of research: "Intellectual" as it is a creative output; "Property" as it is recognised to be a tradable commodity.
In the field of life science and biotechnology, recent advances have been matched by the reflexion on their commercial importance and, therefore, by substantial efforts to protect the outcomes of research involving, for example, genetic material.
While the commercial applications of new life science technologies increase, new types of products and services are developed and new forms of diffusion of technology gain importance and the use of intellectual property rights extends we recognize the need to achieve a balance between a protection adequate to encourage further research and development and a contextual recognition for appropriate limits.
The debate on these issues reflect the evolution of the intellectual property system which, while dealing with the needs of an increasingly knowledge - based economy, built upon global networks and public-private partnerships, has in fact also to respond to societal concerns: the way intellectual property is created, exploited and used, the role played by the patent system in controlling access to medicines and biological resources and the need for a sustainable sharing of the benefits among developed and developing nations are just some of the issues at stake.
At the same time, the growing importance of IP (and the growing costs of obtaining and defending a patent) are strictly related to the changes in the ways businesses operate: “Intellectual property�? is no longer just a basis for producing and marketing goods and services, but has become a valuable asset in itself, that brings revenues through licensing, improve a company's balance sheet, influence stock value.
This leads to a further awareness: that the existing forms of intellectual property probably have to be adapted and that ensuring a degree of international harmonization and coherence in this field is necessary.