Protecting traditional knowledge - Does secrecy offer a solution?
The shortcomings of using the intellectual property system to safeguard the interests of traditional knowledge holders have received considerable attention. Laws that guard against the disclosure of secret traditional knowledge to non-community members may offer a low-cost and accessible way for traditional communities to prevent the misappropriation of their traditional knowledge. This paper reviews the concerns that may arise when holders of traditional knowledge attempt to rely on claiming unfair competition and contract laws to protect their traditional knowledge.
Keywords: Traditional knowledge; TRIPS Agreement; unfair competition; confidential information; secrecy.