Addis Ababa Workshop on IP from Public Research

Open A.I.R.'s Ethiopia Team joined forces for a 3-6 December 2012 workshop in Addis Ababa with the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the Ethiopia Chapter of the African Technology Policy Studies (ATPS) Network. Open A.I.R., UNECA and ATPS-Ethiopia jointly convened the workshop, which focussed on how African government-funded innovation systems, including intellectual property (IP) policies, can be designed in such a way that they optimise the developmental value of public investments in university/tertiary research. Four Open A.I.R. research case studies – in Botswana, South Africa, Uganda and Ethiopia – are examining the dynamics of IP generated by publicly funded research. Among other things, the studies are looking at the degree to which developed-world approaches to commercialisation of IP from public research – as typified by the US Bayh-Dole Act, which prioritises patenting – are appropriate to African innovation.