The SDGs and Gender: The Case of Indigenous and Local Women’s Traditional Knowledge

New Thinking on SDGs and International Law — Policy Brief No. 3

September 30, 2019

The gender aspects of traditional knowledge (TK) protection highlight the important link between intellectual property rights, TK, women and sustainable development. Indigenous and local women’s TK is not only distinct and relevant, but also crucial for accomplishing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. National governments and international organizations dealing with TK should pay attention to gender aspects of the issue. Policies and initiatives that ignore gender aspects of TK can have serious implications for the survival and development of Indigenous and local communities and TK itself as a dynamic and living body of knowledge. The economic significance of TK and its trade value make it an enabler of sustainable development and women’s economic empowerment, especially in light of the World Trade Organization’s recent Declaration on Trade and Women’s Economic Empowerment.

Part of Series

New Thinking on SDGs and International Law

In this series by emerging scholars, policy briefs address opportunities for international and domestic law, economics and policy to contribute toward achieving sustainable development across sectors. The policy briefs are therefore tailored to global economies and policy-oriented solutions in one or more of the ILRP’s core research areas of international intellectual property law, international environmental law, international economic law and international Indigenous law. The idea is to address aspects of CIGI’s research areas through the lens of international law, economics and policy, governance and sustainable development in a public policy format.

About the Author

Ghazaleh Jerban is a Ph.D. candidate in the Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa, and currently holds a doctoral scholarship at the Centre for International Governance Innovation. In 2018, she earned the inaugural Ingenium-University of Ottawa Fellowship in Gender, Science and Technology.