Nanotechnology, Human Rights, Patent law and the Global South: a brief overview

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  • Ana Nordberg
Starting from a Global South perspective, this chapter presents a brief overview of the potential of nanotechnology to serve either as vehicle for broader attainability of human rights or to undermine current efforts. Particular attention is drawn to the complex interconnected issues of ensuring even access to the benefits of technological development and the need to maintain adequate levels of economic incentive to innovation. The present chapter begins with a short characterization of nanotechnology followed by the description of the current key fields of scientific research, state of the art and expectations for the future. The second part explores the social and economic relevance of nanotechnology and its implication for the Global South. In the third part, social, ethical and legal aspects of nanotechnology are framed in terms of human rights issues. The fourth part devotes closer attention to an analysis of the current patent rules intended to safe keep accessibility while confronted with the new challenges brought by nanotechnology inventions. Throughout this chapter, it will be sustained that nanotechnology poses normative challenges implying the need to re-evaluate the functioning of exclusions, exceptions and limitations to patent rights as mechanisms for safekeeping accessibility.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNew Technologies and Human Rights: Challenges to regulation
EditorsMário Viola de Azevedo Cunha, Norberto Nuno Gomes de Andrade, Lucas Lixinski, Lúcio Tomé Féteira
Number of pages20
Publication date2013
ISBN (Print)978-1-4094-4216-5
Publication statusPublished - 2013

ID: 37449345