American University Washington College of Law writes in a press release:
Experts and advocates working on international intellectual property (IP) issues came together at American University Washington College of Law Aug. 25-27, 2011 for the inaugural Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest.
With nearly 200 academics, practitioners, and government and private sector participants from 35 countries, the Global Congress served as a site for sharing research, ideas, and policy proposals for how international IP law can better protect global public interest concerns.
The final proposals from the collective Global Congress were released in the Washington Declaration on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest on Monday, Sept. 5, 2011. The declaration calls for advocacy to promote creativity and innovation through measures such as open information policies, limitations and exceptions to IP rights, reforms to the patent system, promotion of a free Internet, and policies that encourage the development of innovative models for rewarding creativity. It also pushes for the needs of developing countries to be properly addressed by the international IP system. Finally, the declaration encourages public policy to be made openly while weighing the costs and benefits of the presence and absence of IP rights.
This is a good declaration that has been drafted by leading academics and activists in the field.
The declaration contains a series of specific recommendations for action, and is divided into the following sections:
- Putting Intellectual Property in Its Place
- Valuing Openness and the Public Domain
- Strengthening Limitations and Exceptions
- Setting Public Interest Priorities for Patent Reform
- Supporting Cultural Creativity
- Checking Enforcement Excesses
- Implementing Development Agendas
- Requiring Evidence-based Policy Making
The Declaration will remain open for endorsement and comment throughout the next year, until the next Congress convenes in Rio de Janeiro in August 2012.
I just signed the Washington Declaration, and I encourage others who agree with it to do so as well. This is the new course that we urgently need to set for our intellectual property policies.