The Work of the Commission

In order to present balanced, evidence-based policy recommendations the Commission defined a broad investigation agenda. The Commission also appreciated that the value of the final report would be determined by consulting with as many interested parties as possible to understand diverse viewpoints, and that it was essential to listen to the opinions and concerns of developing countries.

1. Meetings and Consultations

The Commission undertook fact-finding missions to Brazil, China, Kenya, India and South Africa to talk with key stakeholders (government, NGO, industry, academic, community, legal, etc.). The Commission also consulted with developed country stakeholders in the UK, US, EU and international organisations concerned with the global IPR framework (WTO, WIPO, OECD, World Bank, UN, International NGOs etc.).

2. Study Papers

A series of key Study Areas were identified, which are of particular relevance to developing countries.

  • The rationale for the IP system and the evidence on its impact
  • The impact of intellectual property rights regimes on health; agriculture and genetic resources; traditional knowledge; and software and the Internet.
  • The issues in building institutional capacity in developing countries
  • The effectiveness of the international system and institutions in relation to developing countries

Reports on these study areas were commissioned from international experts, assessing the current situation, important issues and existing research.

3. Workshops and Conference

A series of eight workshops were convened which brought together international experts in each of the key study areas to discuss the central issues of each topic. And in February 2002 the Commission held a large international conference at the Royal Society in London to give any other interested parties the opportunity to communicate their views to the Commission.

4. On-line Activities

The Commission also used its website to provide opportunities for all those with an interest in IPR to make their views and analyses available to the Commission, and a series of on-line debates were undertaken in each of the study areas. As the Commission report and supporting documents are available on this website, the Commission hopes that this website will continue to be a useful resource for those interested in IPR issues.

5. Final Report

The final report of the Commission containing comprehensive analysis of the evidence and policy recommendations was published on 12th September 2002 and is available to download on this website. Click here for Final Report.