External pressures or domestic politics: explaining change in developing countries’ intellectual property legislation

Winanti, Poppy Sulistyaning (2011) External pressures or domestic politics: explaining change in developing countries’ intellectual property legislation. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This thesis aims to explain the change in developing countries’ intellectual property legislation
as a response to their Trade-related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) obligations. When the
TRIPs Agreement was negotiated during the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade talks,
developing countries resisted its adoption because of their different domestic norms and
traditions relating to intellectual property rights and concerns about the administrative costs of
implementing the agreement. Nevertheless, when the TRIPs Agreement came into force,
almost all developing countries altered their domestic intellectual property laws, and many did
so prior to the deadline for implementation and/or adopted more rigorous intellectual property
rules than required by TRIPs. That many developing countries have adjusted their domestic
intellectual property law poses the puzzle that this thesis seeks to explain. It does so by testing
two competing explanations: the role of external pressures (both in terms of great power
coercion and legalisation of international institutions) and domestic politics. This thesis
combines a survey of the timing and quality of 102 WTO developing country members’
legislation across patents, copyrights, and trademarks, with detailed case studies of changes to
intellectual property legislation in India and Indonesia, which are both unlikely cases for
compliance, but reflect different domestic political circumstances. The empirical findings
demonstrate that external pressures cannot provide a satisfactory explanation, as policy change
occurred both with the presence and in the absence of these pressures. In order to fully
understand the change in developing countries’ intellectual property legislation, it is also
necessary to analyse the preferences of domestic actors (societal and governmental) and how
they interact. By arguing this, this thesis thus suggests the importance of taking domestic
politics into account to explain change in developing countries’ domestic legislation as a
response to inconvenient international obligations.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Compliance, Non-Compliance, Domestic Politics Analysis, Intellectual Property Rights, India, Indonesia, TRIPs Agreement, WTO
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Supervisor's Name: Young, Professor Alasdair
Date of Award: 2011
Depositing User: Ms Poppy Winanti
Unique ID: glathesis:2011-2794
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2011
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2012 14:00
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/2794

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