On Tuesday, 21 April 2015, the 15th session of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) considered the Evaluation Report for the Project on Open Collaborative Projects and IP-Based Models (CDIP/15/3). This project on open collaborate development models is based on Recommendation 36 of the WIPO which states,
To exchange experiences on open collaborative projects such as the Human Genome Project as well as on intellectual property models.
As noted by KEI in February 2012,
In examining the antecedents of Recommendation 36 on open collaborative projects, the International Bureau should pay heed to a letter from 69 prominent scientists, economists, academics, activists and other actors (including Nobel laureates Joseph Stiglitz, Sir John Sulston and Harold Varmus) addressed to Dr. Kamil Idris (former Director-General of the WIPO) on 7 July 2003 requesting WIPO to convene a meeting in 2004 to examine open collaborative models . Specifically, the letter requesting the meeting stated,
[i]n recent years there has been an explosion of open and collaborative projects to create public goods. These projects are extremely important, and they raise profound questions regarding appropriate intellectual property policies. They also provide evidence that one can achieve a high level of innovation in some areas of the modern economy without intellectual property protection, and indeed excessive, unbalanced, or poorly designed intellectual property protections may be counter-productive. We ask that the World Intellectual Property Organization convene a meeting in calendar year 2004 to examine these new open collaborative development models, and to discuss their relevance for public policy.
Brazil highlighted the original purpose of this proposal which was to examine “one of the alternatives for the promotion of innovation without intellectual property protection, allowing for the creation of public goods in a cooperative fashion.”
Here follows the text of Brazil’s intervention in full.
Thank you, Mr Chairman
We thank Mr Keller for presenting the evaluation of the Project on Open Collaborative Projects and IP-Based Models, in document CDIP/15/3. This project was conceived to respond to recommendation 36 of the Development Agenda, which refers to the exchange of experiences on open collaborative projects, such as the Human Genome Project, as well as on intellectual property models. This subject-matter is of great importance for developing countries, since it deals with one of the alternatives for the promotion of innovation without intellectual property protection, allowing for the creation of public goods in a cooperative fashion. In the present evaluation, however, it is not clear if the concept of Open Collaborative Project is the same that motivated the creation of recommendation 36. This conceptual confusion can be observed, in first place, in the inconsistent way in which it is used throughout the document, sometimes being replaced with expressions of a different nature, such as “open innovation”. Secondly, we believe that the main idea behind Open Collaborative Projects is that none of the project’s parties holds exclusive rights over the intellectual property involved. It was not clear if this was the same understanding of the evaluator when coming up with his conclusions and recommendations. Therefore, we would appreciate if the Secretariat could clarify the meaning of Open Collaborative Projects in a more detailed manner before we approve the proposals resulting from this project.
Thank you, Mr Chairman
 Sign-on letter from 69 scientists and economists to Kamil Idris, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization requesting that WIPO host a meeting on open and collaborative development, July 7, 2003, www.cptech.org/ip/wipo/kamil-idris-7july2003.pdf.