Kamil Idris is the President of the International Court of Arbitration and Mediation as well as the former Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization, serving from 1997 until 2008. He holds a PhD in international law from Switzerland’s Geneva Univesity as well as an honorary doctorate from 19 different universities around the globe. Kamil has published numerous books on the topic of intellectual property, development and international law.
The Complexities of Protecting Rights to Intellectual Property:
Kamil Idris recently spoke candidly with Venture Outsource on the topic of protection of intellectual property. There are a number of pitfalls that companies can fall into regarding their intellectual property as a result of globalization. These pitfalls can include piracy, counterfeiting and backlogs in patent processing. The challenges are exacerbated by the communications revolution that has facilitated a rapid increase in piracy of intellectual property. When he is asked about his opinion on what can be done to create a more uniform patent enforceability internationally, Kamil responds that a problem lies in the fact that the standards that different countries have in regard to intellectual property often vary. There is only a limited level of agreement regarding intellectual property enforcement around the world. Major differences continue to remain at the national level in different countries. Kamil is then questioned as to what steps companies can take to manage and resolve disputes over technology transfers when they come up. Regarding this type of situation, Kamil stresses that companies that have an international level of operation need to be ever vigilant and cautious in managing and protecting their intellectual property assets. A company should always exercise due diligence in choosing partner firms to enter into technology transfer agreements with. Kamil also gives his opinion on which aspects of the U.S. patent system need to be looked at in depth and possibly changed. He notes that though he feels that it is inappropriate for him to directly comment on the patent laws of any individual country, he feels the U.S. strongly advocates protection of intellectual property and willingly participates with WIPO. Kamil stresses the fact that WIPO has a commitment to multilateralism. The intergovernmental organization serves as a forum for its members. That membership totals 184 nations that are committed to addressing both the long existing and emerging issues regarding the protection of intellectual property. WIPO carries on a fully inclusive dialogue with all of its stakeholders, this being a requirement for any solution to be devised in terms of protection of intellectual property.
Find Dr. Idris’s latest book on his life story and his views on economic development in Sudan: