Duncan Matthews


International NGOs play a significant role in relation to intellectual property policy-making and norm-setting in the following multilateral institutions: the World Trade Organization ("WTO"); the World Intellectual Property Organization ("WIPO"); the World Health Organization ("WHO"); the Convention on Biological Diversity Conference of the Party ("CBD-COP"); and the Food and Agriculture Organization ("FAO') of the United Nations. International NGOs enhance the capacity of developing country delegates to multilateral institutions to negotiate on intellectual property issues. Although there are limits to the relationship between developing country delegates and international NGOs, relative to the resources available, international NGOs have had a considerable impact, enriching the debate on intellectual property rights and development policy. However NGOs must remain vigilant to ensure that they do not become donor driven and subject to pressures to champion particular issues or to switch attention away from intellectual property rights and towards issues of more immediate concern.

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