WIPO Headquarters, Geneva

The annual general assembly of the World Intellectual Property Organisation – WIPO – offers a chance to take a strategic look at the Organisation’s work across the board. For IFLA, it is an opportunity to highlight the priorities of libraries, and make the connection with the broader objectives of WIPO, and the UN system as a whole.

As the United Nations agency responsible for questions around intellectual property, and in particular copyright, the World Intellectual Property Organisation is a vital partner for IFLA.

With ongoing discussions about exceptions and limitations for libraries, archives and museums, its Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights is a key focus for our international advocacy work.

IFLA therefore works hard to engage with WIPO and its Member States, underlining the need for a minimum set of exceptions and limitations to copyright, as well as for provisions that allow libraries to work across borders.

General Assembly: Global Issues, National Action

The General Assembly, held from 24 September to 2 October, is the key high-level event in the WIPO calendar. It sees Member States take a strategic look at all of the organisation’s work.

This includes making recommendations to committees, determining whether to launch diplomatic conferences (where Treaties are agreed) and dealing with a number of administrative questions.

Particular issues this year include the placement of regional WIPO offices, and potential progress on a new treaty on design rights.

For IFLA, it is an opportunity to continue engagement with Member States, and underlining the need for the right copyright laws for libraries around the world.

IFLA will also stress the need, in the context of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the need for intellectual property policies to do their part to deliver human rights and development.  

You can follow IFLA’s engagement on Twitter. Read more about IFLA’s work with the World Intellectual Property Organisation, and about how you can get involved. IFLA’s interventions will be published here shortly.