Title: Protection of Traditional Knowledge by Geographical Indications

Authors: Michael Blakeney

Addresses: Faculty of Law, University of Western Australia, Queen Mary, University of London, UK

Abstract: This paper considers the extent to which Geographical Indications (GIs) regimes might provide for the protection of Traditional Knowledge (|TK|), through a consideration of the debate on TK within both the WTO and WIPO. The author relates the policy objectives, identified by WIPO as ideally underpinning the legislative protection of TK, to the policy objectives of GIs protection. The paper concludes with an examination of debate within the WTO, for the extension of the special protection offered to GIs for wines and spirits to handicrafts and other products and concludes with some case studies of handicrafts as examples of GIs.

Keywords: international intellectual property; intellectual property law; geographical indications; traditional knowledge; WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Genetic Resources; World Intellectual Property Organization; WTO; World Trade Organization; TRIPS; Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights; IPR; wines; spirits; handicrafts.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIPM.2009.026912

International Journal of Intellectual Property Management, 2009 Vol.3 No.4, pp.357 - 374

Published online: 08 Jul 2009 *

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