Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Intellectual Property Rights Systems and the Assemblage of Local Knowledge Systems

  • Saskia Vermeylen (a1), George Martin (a2) and Roland Clift (a3)
Abstract

The mounting loss of the traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples presents environmental as well as ethical issues. Fundamental among these is the sustainability of indigenous societies and their ecosystems. Although the commercial expropriation of traditional knowledge grows, rooted in a global, corporate application of intellectual property rights (IPRs), the survival of indigenous societies becomes more problematic. One reason for this is an unresolved conflict between two perspectives. In the modernist view, traditional knowledge is a tool to use (or discard) for the development of indigenous society, and therefore it must be subordinated to Western science. Alternatively, in the postmodernist view, it is harmonious with nature, providing a new paradigm for human ecology, and must be preserved intact. We argue that this encumbering polarization can be allayed by shifting from a dualism of traditional and scientific knowledge to an assemblage of local knowledge, which is constituted by the interaction of both in a third space. We argue that IPR can be reconfigured to become the framework for creating such a third space.

Copyright
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

A. Abramson , and D. Theodossopoulos . Land, Law and Environment: Mythical Land, Legal Boundaries. London: Pluto, 2000.

A. Agrawal Dismantling the Divide between Indigenous and Scientific Knowledge.” Development and Change 26 (1995): 413–39.

F. Berkes , J. Colding , and C. Folke . “Rediscovery of Traditional Ecological Knowledge as Adaptive Management.” Ecological Applications 10 (2000): 1251–62.

M. Brown Can Culture Be Copyrighted?Current Anthropology 39 (1998): 193222.

D. Chambers , and R. Gillespie . “Locality in the History of Science: Colonial Science, Technoscience, and Indigenous Knowledge.” Osiris 15 (2000): 221–40.

R. Ellen From Ethno-Science to Science, or ‘What the Indigenous Knowledge Debate Tells Us about How Scientists Define Their Project’.” Journal of Cognition and Culture 4 (2004): 409–50.

A. Escobar After Nature: Steps to an Antiessentialist Political Ecology.” Current Anthropology 40 (1999): 130.

S. Feldman , and R. Welsh . “Feminist Knowledge Claims, Local Knowledge, and Gender Divisions of Agricultural Labor: Constructing a Successor Science.” Rural Sociology 60 (1995): 2343.

S. Greene Indigenous People Incorporated? Culture as Politics, Culture as Property in Pharmaceutical Bioprospecting.” Current Anthropology 45 (2004): 211–38.

N. Hassanein , and J. Kloppenburg . “Where the Grass Grows Again: Knowledge Exchange in the Sustainable Agriculture Movement.” Rural Sociology 60 (1995): 721–40.

M. Leach , and J. Fairhead . “Manners of Contestation: ‘Citizen Science’ and ‘Indigenous Knowledge’ in West Africa and the Caribbean.” International Social Science Journal 54 (2002): 299311.

G. Martin , and S. Vermeylen . “Intellectual Property, Indigenous Knowledge, and Biodiversity.” Capitalism Nature Socialism 16 (2005): 2748.

K. Milton Environmentalism and Cultural Theory: Exploring the Role of Anthropology in Environmental Discourse. London: Routledge, 1996.

S.P. Mulligan For Whose Benefit? Limits to Sharing Benefits in the Bioprospecting ‘Regime’.” Environmental Politics 8 (1999): 3565.

A. Nygren Local Knowledge in the Environment-Development Discourse.” Critique of Anthropology 19 (1999): 267–88.

D. Posey Commodification of the Sacred through Intellectual Property Rights.” Journal of Ethnopharmacology 83 (2002): 312.

W. Pretorius “TRIPS and Developing Countries: How Level Is the Playing Field?” In Global Intellectual Property Rights: Knowledge, Access and Development, edited by P. Drahos and R. Mayne , 183–97. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2002.

N. Stehr The Social and Political Control of Knowledge in Modern Society.” International Social Science Journal 55 (2003): 643–55.

D. Turnbull Local Knowledge and Comparative Scientific Traditions.” Knowledge & Policy 6 (1993–1994): 2954.

D. Turnbull Reframing Science and Other Local Knowledge Traditions.” Futures 29 (1997): 551–62.

S. Vermeylen Contextualising ‘Fair’ and ‘Equitable’: The San's Reflections on the Hoodia and Benefit Sharing Agreement.” Local Environment 12 (2007): 423–36.

B. Whitton Herder's Critique of the Enlightenment: Cultural Community versus Cosmopolitan Rationalism.” History and Theory 27 (1988): 146–68.

J. Wuthnow Deleuze in the Postcolonial: On Nomads and Indigenous Politics.” Feminist Theory 3 (2002): 182200.

R. Wynberg Rhetoric, Realism and Benefit Sharing: Use of Traditional Knowledge of Hoodia Species in the Development of an Appetite Suppressant.” The Journal of World Intellectual Property 7 (2004): 851–76.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

International Journal of Cultural Property
  • ISSN: 0940-7391
  • EISSN: 1465-7317
  • URL: /core/journals/international-journal-of-cultural-property
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×