With increased global and domestic attention on the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), uncertainty remains around several aspects of the negotiations. The current opportunity to renegotiate the agreement calls for thought leadership in reaching a deal that works for Canadians and advances some of this country’s core values within the trading zone.

Given the fast-paced negotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement, and as part of efforts to support Canada’s negotiators and policy makers with clear, simple and factual analyses of Canada’s key interests within the negotiations, the International Law Research Program at the Centre for International Governance Innovation commissioned a series of essays addressing intellectual property rights. A modernized chapter for intellectual property rights could have a deep impact on the emerging knowledge economy in Canada and for the people who turn ideas into innovations.

The authors featured in this special report provide important recommendations to support the development and growth of an innovation economy in Canada with respect to the copyright system, the patent system, as well as Canada’s geographical indications rules. The essays also point to some emerging issues that have yet to be considered within the existing NAFTA. In light of Canada’s recent international dealings and domestic commitments, these areas — big data and Indigenous traditional knowledge, in particular — form important considerations.

This series brings together a community of scholars and practitioners to share, through a variety of contexts, some of the requirements of a modernized NAFTA Chapter 17.

Thematics
  • Andrew Torrance

    Andrew Torrance is a senior fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program (ILRP), effective July 2016. He is also the Earl B. Shurtz Research Professor at the University of Kansas School of Law.

  • Bassem Awad

    Bassem Awad is deputy director of international intellectual property law and innovation, with CIGI's International Law Research Program. In this role, he provides strategic guidance of the thematic area. A specialist in intellectual property law, he has served as a judge at the Appeal Court in Egypt and the United Arab Emirates and as adjunct professor at Western University.

  • E. Richard Gold

    Richard Gold is a senior fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program (ILRP), effective October 2016. He is also a James McGill Professor and associate dean (graduate studies) with McGill University’s Faculty of Law. 

  • Jean-Frédéric Morin

    Jean-Frédéric Morin is a senior fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program (ILRP), effective May 2016. He is also associate professor at Laval University, where he holds the Canada Research Chair in International Political Economy. 

  • Marsha Cadogan

    Marsha S. Cadogan is a post-doctoral fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program (ILRP). Her research at CIGI is focused on the interrelationship between geographical indications (GIs) and trademark laws, as well as the global implications of GIs in preferential free trade agreements.

  • Oluwatobiloba (Tobi) Moody

    Oluwatobiloba (Tobi) Moody is a post-doctoral fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program (ILRP). In this role, Tobi researches international law and governance pertaining to intellectual property with a specific focus on the protection of traditional knowledge and genetic resources.