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Peter Drahos
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Peter Drahos is a Professor in Law and the Director of the Centre for the Governance of Knowledge and Development in the Regulatory Institutions Network (RegNet), College of Asia and the Pacific, at the Australian National University, Canberra. He currently holds a Chair in Intellectual Property at Queen Mary, University of London.
His former positions include Herchel Smith Senior Research Fellow in Intellectual Property at the Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary, University of London and officer of the Australian Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department.
Peter holds degrees in law, politics and philosophy and is admitted as a barrister and solicitor.  He has published widely in law and social science journals on a variety of topics including contract, legal philosophy, telecommunications, intellectual property, trade negotiations and international business regulation.  He has worked as a consultant to government, international organizations and international NGOs.
Peter's publications include:

  • Information Feudalism: Who Controls the Knowledge Economy? (with John Braithwaite), Earthscan, 2002
  • Global Intellectual Property Rights: Knowledge, Access and Development, (with Ruth Mayne), Macmillan, 2002
  • Global Business Regulation, (with John Braithwaite), Cambridge University Press, 2000
  • A Philosophy of Intellectual Property, Dartmouth, 1996

'Information feudalism is a regime of property rights that is not economically efficient, and does not get the balance right between rewarding innovation and diffusing it ... It makes democrative citizens trespassers on knowledge that should be the common heritage of humankind, their educational birthright. Ironically, information feudalism, by dismantling the publicness of knowledge, will eventually rob the knowledge economy of much of its productivity.'

Information Feudalism
(with John Braithwaite) 2002

'In approaching issues and theories related to the justification, formation, extension and enforcement of intellectual property rights we should have an instrumental attitude rather than a proprietarian one.'

A Philosophy of Intellectual Property

'Intellectual property is an area where structural power meets and usually trumps the negotiating coalitions and tactics of the weak.'

'Four Lessons for Developing Countries
from the Trade Negotiations over Access to Medicines'

'Each strand in global webs of regulation may be weak, but when NGOs learn to pull the right strand at the right moment they can tighten the knots that bind them into a wider fabric of social action.'

'Ratcheting Up and Driving Down Global Regulatory Standards'
(with John Braithwaite) 1999

'Developing countries could, as a matter of sovereign right, adopt a scheme of protection for indigenous knowledge without breaching any of their international treaty obligations in the field of intellectual property.'

'Thinking Strategically about Intellectual Property Rights'

'A treaty on access to knowledge should, through its committees of technical experts, draw on the insights of entrepreneurship and foster the growth of networks that stretch across developed and developing countries.'

'Access to Knowledge: Time for a Treaty?'



Does dialogue make a difference?

In the Yale Law Journal's on-line companion, Pocket Part, Prof Peter Drahos asks 'Does dialogue make a difference?: Structural change and the limits of framing'.

Download a pdf version of the Pocket Part article>>

A Philosophy of Intellectual Property: now available in Chinese translation

Commercial Press, Beijing, have recently published Prof Peter Drahos's A Philosophy of Intellectual Property, which was first published in English in 1996. Translated by Zhou Lin, the Chinese edition features a new introduction by Peter.

Further information from the publisher>>

Postcards from International Negotiations: IP, Biodiversity and Food Security

Prof Peter Drahos has contributed a chapter to the recently published 'The Future Control of Food: A Guide to International Negotiations and Rules on Intellectual Property, Biodiversity and Food Security' published by Earthscan and freely available on-line.

Download further information and order form>>
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Patent offices in developing countries

Prof Peter Drahos has published 'Trust me: Patent offices in developing countries' as a CGKD Working Paper. This paper explores patent administration in developing countries operating within a global system.

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Patent reform for innovation and risk management

In the inaugural edition of Knowledge Ecology Studies, Peter describes the dramatic growth of patent systems through the last two centuries and advocates patent reform which breaks up concentrations of power through a separation of powers approach.

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Access to medicines and trade negotiations: lessons for developing countries

In the Liverpool Law Review, Peter discusses four key lessons for developing countries after a decade of negotiations over access to medicines. He argues that a networked governance approach to negotiation would better serve developing countries in the future.

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Pacific Regional Consultation on HIV

In April, Peter participated in high-level regional consultation with 15 Pacific Island countries to consider HIV and the Law as part of a major UNAIDS project. The consultation concluded with the release of a unamiously adopted statement documenting the support of participants and commitments made for taking further action in the response to HIV or AIDS.
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10th Annual Niro Lecture, Chicago

Peter delivered the 10th Annual Niro Lecture at DePaul University College of Law in Chicago in 2007. Each year, an influential figure in IP and/or IT addresses faculty, students, and area attorneys on current issues.
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Intellectual property: An educational perspective

Tezukayama University, Osaka, Japan, hosted Professor Drahos in 2007 as the keynote speaker at a recent symposium on IP and education.
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Governance of the EU patent system

In 2007, Peter presented an address to the European Parliament about patent administration reform.
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Complete cv

Download pdf of Peter Drahos's complete cv >>