Normative Consideration of A2K in the Space between Intellectual Property and Human Rights


  • Mili Joy Baxi Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat —131 001, Haryana, India



Access to Knowledge, Intellectual Property Law, Human Rights Law


In the long-running tensions between Human Rights Law (HRL) and Intellectual Property Rights Law (IPR), the author
is introducing the conceptual placement of Access to knowledge (A2K) movements. Access to knowledge (A2K) is the ‘new
politics of intellectual property’ that seeks to fundamentally realign and reform intellectual property law. It is difficult to draw a commonality between an activist protesting for waiving patents on HIV+ medicine and Covid-19 vaccines and a subsistence farmer or a software programmer. A2K politics offers a perfect balance of freedom and control that the IP and HR debate are trying to find. This analysis is relevant because it seeks to investigate two conceptions; one is to understand the relevance of the access to knowledge movements in the IPR - Human rights debate. There is no clear discussion wherein normative examination of this kind has been undertaken. Second is, viewing the solutions to human rights issues caused by IP or caused to due scarcity or governance issues, resolved through IP. Although the concept draws from existing debates, it departs on some conceptual level from the available framework on IP and human rights.