Contractual Practices and Clauses Relating to Intellectual Property, Access to Genetic Resources and Benefit-sharing

April 7, 2003

Geneva, 04 Apr 2003

Document prepared by the Secretariat
Full text


1. This document provides updated input into the work of the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore ("the Committee") on intellectual property ("IP") aspects of contracts and licenses concerning genetic resources.

At its fourth session, the Committee agreed on the further development of the pilot database of contractual practices and clauses relating to IP, access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing as a practical tool in the provision of information in this area ("the Contracts Database"). The Committee also agreed that Questionnaire WIPO/GRTKF/IC/Q2 should continue to be disseminated as a means of promoting a wider range of material in the database.

2. This document reports on the updating of the Contracts Database to a more fully operational and comprehensive version, including the translation of the Contract Checklist Pages into three languages, discusses the role of contractual arrangements in recently enacted legislation on access to genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge (TK), and provides an overview of the IP aspects of contracts relating to biological material and associated TK.

It proposes that the process of collecting information for the Contracts Database continue, and that the database be maintained and updated so that it can continue to be used as a permanent, freely available resource by all those with a practical or policy interest in the IP aspects of contractual practices and contracts concerning access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing. It also proposes that, on the basis of the empirical evidence provided in the Contracts Database, work should resume on the development of guidelines, best practices or other guidance, on the IP aspects of contracts and licenses concerning access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing.


World Intellectual Property Organisation

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