Experts Identify Conditions for Success in IP

Jul.25 (China Daily) -- Legal frameworks, education, extensive cooperation and the integration between the government and the private sector are some of the factors necessary to build an intellectual property ecosystem, said officials and experts from China and overseas at the High-Level Conference on Intellectual Property for Countries Along the Belt and Road on Thursday.

Long known as an economy based on energy, Saudi Arabia aims to build an innovative society with appropriate policies, regulations, and education and training mechanisms, according to the country's latest strategy called Vision 2030.

Abdulaziz Alswailem, vice-president for scientific research support at King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia, said that both the government and private sector are engaged in the strategy, and that "the best and brightest ideas will be incubated in the right incubators" with the proper guidance and legal framework to contribute to a better society.

The initiatives will cover the entire chain from ideas to end products, he said.

To encourage innovation and build an innovation ecosystem, he called for simplified IP filing processes and management, mechanisms to share information and experiences, maximized benefits for innovators, improved motivation for those involved in the process and greater international collaboration to reduce redundant works.

"We need to look at IP as living things because they live, feel and die," he said. "We don't want ideas to die. We always want to keep them in a healthy way."

Also, "we need expand the education and training strategy towards cultivating a society that respects the practices of IP and values the benefits it encompasses", said Cham Nimul, under secretary of state at the Ministry of Commerce in Cambodia.

"For Cambodia and anywhere else, public awareness and proper education hold the key to fully embracing a culture of innovation," she added.

Carsten Fink, chief economist at the World Intellectual Property Organization, commented on certain findings from WIPO's research into how innovations evolve and what ecosystems nurture them.

One of the most important findings is that governments are "critical as funders of scientific research", according to Fink.

"Scientific discoveries are really critical in driving promising ideas forward," he said. "Also, governments are important in moving technologies from laboratories to the production stage."

Market forces and the efforts of the private sector are also important, said Fink, as companies are critical for the process of adapting technologies to the needs of the market.

In addition, he noted the importance of "linkages" in the innovation ecosystem, including "informal linkages" between researchers and "formal linkages" - collaboration agreements between universities and firms and agreements between firms.

In China, "IP work has been incorporated into industries, trade, finance and other fields with policies formulated synergistically", said Lyu Wei, director-general of the Research Department of Techno-Economy at the Development Research Center of China's State Council. However, she added that "the quality has yet to be improved for China to be an IP power".

She said the strategy of innovation-driven development has raised new requirements for IP work, adding that the country is shifting its development focus from quantity to quality, and from creation to utilization of IP.

With the emergence of new industries, IP protection has been confronted with new problems, such as the patentability of genes and business models, internet piracy, the abuse of IP rights and unfair competition, she said.

As a result, Lyu believes that new trends will emerge in China's IP policies, including the integration of government efforts and market means, more stringent IP protection, improved IP service and increased international cooperation.