Intellectual Property, Traditional Resources Rights, and Natural Law: A Clash of Cultures

Document Type


Publication Date

September 2007


Western nations, through international treaties and bodies such as the World Trade Organization, the World Intellectual Property Organization, and economic and political pressures on many governments, are to a large degree succeeding in strengthening protection of intellectual property rights as they are understood mainly within the western context. Framing the debate within Locke's theory of natural law, the paper discusses the extent to which this strengthening of intellectual property rights is appropriate for developing countries, especially within the African context.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

International Review of Information Ethics, no. 7, article 19, p. 1-7.