This is an examination of the origins and impact of the agreement on Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) negotiated during the Uruguay Round of GATT talks. The principal theme is that the TRIPS agreement is not in the best interests of the poorer countries, and that its imposition on them by the richer countries has more to do with the exercise of political and economic power than with the positive economic benefits the agreement's supporters claim it can deliver. To support this assertion the book critically examines the economic evidence regarding the impact of intellectual property rights on such important variables as export performance, foreign investment, and economic growth. The author provides a political economic analysis of why the poorer countries acceded to the TRIPS agreement, illustrated with case studies of two important industries where the struggle over intellectual property is especially strong: pharmaceutical and agricultural biotechnology sectors. Designed for use in advanced undergraduate and graduate courses in international political economy and international relations theory, the book offer a radical view of the process of globalization.
Table of Contents
Tables -- Acronyms -- Acknowledgments -- 1. Introduction and Background -- 2. The Ideology of Intellectual Property -- 3. Intellectual Property and Positivist Economic Science -- 4. Capital, Class, and the State in the Global Economy -- 5. The Political Economy of TRIPS -- 6. TRIPS and the Global Pharmaceutical Industry -- 7. Intellectual Property Rights and the Agricultural Biotechnology Revolution -- 8. Counterhegemony and the Future of TRIPS -- Notes -- References -- Index -- About the Author.
DONALD G. RICHARDS is professor of economics at Indiana State University where he teaches primarily international economics and political economy. He is the author of numerous articles on the international political economy of poorer countries. He has a particular interest in Latin America and especially the Southern Cone region of South America; he has worked as economic development policy consultant in Paraguay