The Right to Food and the TRIPS Agreement

With a Particular Emphasis on Developing Countries' Measures for Food Production and Distribution


A concise analysis of the relationship between patent rights and human rights is given in this book, focusing on the right to food. The UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights identified ‘apparent conflicts’ or ‘actual or potential conflicts’ between human rights and intellectual property rights. The TRIPS Agreement under the WTO Agreement and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights constitute the central treaties in the analysis. The book finds that the right to food and related human rights of the Covenant give important guidance when implementing intellectual property legislation and science policy in general. Moreover, the book does not find that the two treaties actually conflict. There are, however, concerns regarding the national implementation of the treaties.

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Hans Morten Haugen, Dr. Juris (2006) University of Oslo, M.A in Political Science 1995, is Associate Professor at Diakonhjemmet University College, Oslo. He has written four articles on human rights and patent rights in The Journal of World Intellectual Property. Dr. Haugen received the prestigious His Majesty the King’s Gold Medal for 2007 for his dissertation, on which the current book is based.
Preface; Part I: Treaties Relating to Food and Protection of Biotechnology: 1 Introduction; 2 Food, Biotechnology and Intellectual Property ;
3 Methodology: Principles and Sources under International Law; Part II: Relevant Provisions from the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: 4 Specifying the Nature of the Obligations and the Approach for Understanding Economic, Social and Cultural Human Rights; 5 The Right to Food as Recognized in the International Covenant
on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;
6 The Right to Benefit from the Moral and Material Interests of Scientific Production and the Right to Enjoy Benefits from Scientific Progress and Its Applications; 7 The Justifiable Limitations to the Recognized Rights; Part III: TRIPS and TRIPS-Compatible Protection: 8 The TRIPS Agreement, Particularly Patent Protection; 9 Effective Sui Generis Systems for the Protection of New
Varieties of Plants; Part IV: Comparison between Measures to Realize the Right to Food and Measures to Strengthen Patent and Plant Variety Protection:10 Jurisdictional and Jurisprudential Issues under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the TRIPS Agreement; 11 Principles for Identifying and Solving Conflicts between Treaties, as well as Identifying the Nature of Treaties, Applied to
TRIPS and the Covenant; 12 Conflict or Compatibility between Human Rights and Patent
and Plant Variety Protection?; Part V: Conclusions; Acronyms; Symbols; Definitions;
Table of Cases; Literature; Index.
All those seeking to learn more on the interface between human rights, intellectual property and the WTO, from an academic interest or by being responsible for negotiatons and national implementation.
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