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The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples - A Commentary edited by Hohmann, Jessie; Weller, Marc (22nd March 2018)

Part III Rights to Culture, Ch.11 Intellectual Property and Technologies: Article 31

Tobias Stoll

From: The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: A Commentary

Edited By: Jessie Hohmann, Marc Weller

Subject(s):
Indigenous peoples

This chapter looks at the specific right to intellectual property and technologies in Article 31. Article 31 sets out a number of rights of indigenous peoples relating to their science, technology, and culture, and calls for State action in this regard, which is to be taken with the involvement of those peoples. The provision relates to three different subject matters, between which there obviously exists quite some overlap. It refers, first, to ‘cultural heritage, traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions’. Second, it refers to ‘intellectual property’ over such heritage, knowledge, and expressions, and third, to ‘manifestations of…sciences, technologies and cultures’ — representative examples of which find themselves included in an illustrative list. According to Article 31, with a view to each of these subject matters, indigenous peoples have a right to ‘maintain, control, protect and develop’.

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