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Leveraging Intellectual Property Management for Crop Biotechnology Innovation

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Title: Leveraging Intellectual Property Management for Crop Biotechnology Innovation
Author: Thaher, Nael
Department: School of Environmental Design and Rural Development
Program: Rural Studies
Advisor: Hambly Odame, Helen
Abstract: Intellectual property rights (IPRs) and their management are tremendously important aspects of global policy for crop biotechnology. This dissertation examines four key dimensions of intellectual property (IP) management in crop biotechnology which form an integrative model for capacity development and innovation. The emergent themes of collaboration, incentives, protection and enforcement are examined with a specific case study of the management of IPRs in soybean biotechnology. The aim of this dissertation is to examine the management of IP for agricultural R&D, and more specifically, crop biotechnology. Drawing from data obtained through document review and in-depth key informant interviews, the soybean case study demonstrates how Brazil’s national R&D institution, EMBRAPA, was influential in changing technology due to patent expiration. Findings show that IPRs in first generation genetically modified (GM) soybean were profoundly important, despite the quick management switch-over to second-generation GM soybean. The research also indicates the availability of generic traits post-patent expiration which is only confined to the public research institutions. Furthermore, the findings indicate that the inclusion of a technology fee was a major issue for life sciences industries and farmers in the case study. To address the topic of capacity development in IP management of crop biotechnology, an exploratory study was designed and implemented to collect data using a modified Delphi method. This involved two rounds of brainstorming by participants based in public institutions in North America followed by their ranking of weighted and collated findings. Most responses identified by the expert group were rated ‘important’ and ‘very important’. The data related to major barriers indicated that the responses were entirely independent from one another and lacked correlation. With regards to requisite attitudes and skills, responses were highly correlated and shared covariance. Responses and their mean scores also indicated that there was consensus and agreement about the importance of each response. This dissertation concludes with recommendations for further research and action on the management of IPRs in seed biotechnology. Furthermore, this dissertation suggests that there is an identified need by the expert group for the development of capacity-building programs in IP management for agricultural R&D, particularly in Canada.
Date: 2017-06
Rights: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada
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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada