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2009 - Current

 
Access to Knowledge in India 

 Ramesh Subramanian and Lea Shaver (editors)
 Bloomsbury Academic, 2011

 This is the third volume in our Access to Knowledge series. India is a $1 trillion economy which nevertheless struggles with a very high poverty rate and very low access to knowledge for almost  seventy percent of its population which lives in rural areas.

 This volume features four parts on current issues facing intellectual property, development policy (especially rural development policy) and associated innovation, from the Indian perspective.   Each chapter is authored by scholars taking an interdisciplinary approach and affiliated to Indian or American universities and Indian think-tanks. Each examines a policy area that significantly impacts  access  to knowledge. These include information and communications technology for development; the Indian digital divide; networking rural areas; copyright and comparative business models in music;  free and open source software; patent reform and access to medicines; the role of the Indian government in promoting access to knowledge internationally and domestically.

 


 

The Global Flow of Information: Legal, Social, and Cultural Perspectives  
Ramesh Subramanian and Eddan Katz (editors)
NYU Press, 2011 – Ex Machina: Law, Technology, and Society series

The Internet has been integral to the globalization of a range of goods and production, from intellectual property and scientific research to political discourse and cultural symbols. Yet the ease with which it allows information to flow at a global level presents enormous regulatory challenges. Understanding if, when, and how the law should regulate online, international flows of information requires a firm grasp of past, present, and future patterns of information flow, and their political, economic, social, and cultural consequences.

In The Global Flow of Information, specialists from law, economics, public policy, international studies, and other disciplines probe the issues that lie at the intersection of globalization, law, and technology, and pay particular attention to the wider contextual question of Internet regulation in a globalized world. While individual essays examine everything from the pharmaceutical industry to television to “information warfare” against suspected enemies of the state, all contributors address the fundamental question of whether or not the flow of information across national borders can be controlled, and what role the law should play in regulating global information flows.

 


 

 Access to Knowledge in Egypt: New Research on Intellectual Property, Innovation and Development
Edited by Nagla Rizk & Lea Shaver
Bloomsbury Academic, February 2010

The conventional wisdom in Egypt examines the issue of intellectual property solely as a question of policing and enforcement. The high levels of protection indicated by the WTO Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights are unquestioningly assumed to be desirable. Policy debates—and all too often academic ones as well—focus only on the questions of how to more efficiently tighten IP protection and crack down on “piracy.” Yet a more critical examination is urgently needed, whereby IP law, policy, and practice are viewed from a development perspective, rather than from an enforcement perspective.

This volume takes on this endeavour. It offers the first examination of IP issues in Egypt adopting a multidisciplinary bottom-up approach that aims at maximizing access and contribution to knowledge, and in turn, promoting development. Bringing rigorous empirical research to bear on unquestioned ideologies, the collaborating authors question the conventional wisdom that more IP protection is necessarily better for innovation and development.

Contributors: Ahmed Abdel Latif, Hossam Baghat, Jack Balkin, Sherif El-Kassas, Sherif Kamel, Nagal Rizk, Lea Shaver and Rebecca Wright.

 


 

Protocol Politics: The Globalization of Internet Governance 
Laura DeNardis (author)
MIT Press, 2009 – Information Revolution and Global Politics series

The Internet has reached a critical point. The world is running out of Internet addresses. There is a finite supply of approximately 4.3 billion Internet Protocol (IP) addresses—the unique binary numbers required for every exchange of information over the Internet—within the Internet’s prevailing technical architecture (IPv4). In the 1990s the Internet standards community identified the potential depletion of these addresses as a crucial design concern and selected a new protocol (IPv6) that would expand the number of Internet addresses exponentially.

Protocol Politics examines what’s at stake politically, economically, and technically in the selection and adoption of a new Internet protocol. Laura DeNardis’s key insight is that protocols are political. IPv6 intersects with provocative topics including Internet civil liberties, U.S. military objectives, globalization, institutional power struggles, and the promise of global democratic freedoms. DeNardis offers recommendations for Internet standards governance, based not only on technical concerns but on principles of openness and transparency, and examines the global implications of looming Internet address scarcity versus the slow deployment of the new protocol designed to solve this problem.