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Centre for Transformative Innovation and Swinburne Law School: Research Seminar (7 September)

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Date: Thursday 7 September 2017
Venue: Moot Court, TD120, Swinburne University, Hawthorn Campus

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Linking Trade and Innovation with the Sustainable Development Goals

by Anthony Taubman, FRSA
Director of the Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division, World Trade Organization


For the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), innovation is critical areas in many areas, such as energy, health, and agriculture. Yet, in a telling frame shift from the preceding Millennium Development Goals, the SDGs also recognise innovation as an objective in itself, and not merely in an instrumental role, which raises searching questions about how to define and then measure innovation in the context of social and economic development. Linking trade and innovation with sustainable development represents thus a pressing priority for international cooperation, entailing complementary strategic use of the intellectual property (IP) system.

On the one hand, innovation opens up new and more accessible avenues for international trade, for instance enabling some SMEs to reach out to global markets for the first time. On the other hand, international trade contributes to the development of innovative capacity, for instance through knowledge spillovers and access to inputs for innovation.

Finally, IP systems can contribute to a positive interaction between trade and innovation in support of economic and social development. To ensure that the IP system delivers on all fronts is a challenging undertaking. These linkages are complex, in constant evolution, and show great diversity across different sectors and different economies, while also requiring extensive collaborative networks across national jurisdictions. Meeting the SDGs calls not only for technological innovation and effective access to the fruits of innovation, but innovation in multilateral cooperation and governance.

About the speaker

Antony Taubman, FRSA, is Director of the Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division, World Trade Organization.

From 2002 to 2009, he directed the Global Intellectual Property Issues Division of WIPO (including the Traditional Knowledge Division and Life Sciences Program), covering a wide range of programs on intellectual property and genetic resources, traditional knowledge and folklore, the life sciences, and related global issues including public health and climate, the environment, climate change, human rights, food security, bioethics and indigenous issues. He previously worked for WIPO from 1995 to 1998, his duties then including development cooperation in Asia and the Pacific, the development of the revised WIPO program and budget, and associated policy development.

This research seminar is brought to you by Swinburne Law School and the Centre for Transformative Innovation. Join our monthly seminar series - check the Faculty of Business and Law events page for future seminars.

Contact Information: Jake Goldenfein
Email: Tel: +61 3 9214 8942