Experts Deliberate on “Innovation, Economic Development and IP” at SMU-JINDAL-RENMIN International Conference

 Leading academics and policy makers from across India and the world debate on issues of innovation and IP

•       India needs to bring in its own culture of innovation for its people without turning to the West: Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog

•       India is a victim of piracy rather than being hauled by piracy: Ms Pratibha Singh, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India.

The Jindal Global Law School (JGLS) of O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU) in association with Singapore Management University (SMU) and Renmin University of China recently organized a collaborative workshop on innovation, economic development and Intellectual Property (IP) in New Delhi. The two-day forum witnessed significant participation of leading experts, scholars and practitioners from across the world to discuss and deliberate on the said issues.

The Chief Guest at the forum, Mr. Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog while delivering the inaugural address shared India’s IP protection vision and commitment towards respecting and safeguarding innovation. He said, “If you are not an innovative society it would be very difficult to grow at a rapid rate over a long period of time”.

Stressing on the Indian government’s focus on start-ups, Mr. Kant, said, “If India has to grow for three decades at 9% – 10% there are several challenges. We need to capture the young energy, vibrancy and dynamism of our young people who are initiating a vast number of start-ups.”

India and China have their own unique issues like rapid urbanization. India has to gear up to the challenge of 780 million people moving to urban spaces by 2050. In such a scenario innovation becomes crucial to providing infrastructure to such a huge volume of population. Speaking of sustainability Mr Amitabh Kant, said, “We need to find sustainable innovative solutions to issues that have been plaguing 1 billion people of India. India needs to bring in its own culture of innovation for its people without turning to the west.”

Delivering the welcome address at the forum, Professor C Raj Kumar, Founding Vice-Chancellor, O. P. Jindal Global University said, “Today’s conference is the starting point of an institutional collaboration between JGU, Singapore Management University and Renmin University of China to examine legal, policy and regulatory issues relating to IP, economic development and innovation in the Asian subcontinent. I am delighted to welcome all participants to this international forum that will discuss and debate on some of the most critical and central issues of our time related to the future of innovation and economic development.”

Prof. Kumar further observed, “The need of the hour necessitates a policy environment that can help shape an IP regime which meets the aspiration of an innovation regime. I hope this debate and discourse will be meaningful and have a long-lasting impact as we evolve some of the most fundamental issues surrounding innovation and IP in the country.”

Professor Kung-Chung Liu of Singapore Management University (SMU) spoke about creating synergy between the two Asian giants and how it can bring about a significant change in the world of innovation and entrepreneurship.

Ms. Pratibha Singh, Senior Advocate who has essayed an instrumental role in drafting the Indian National IPR Policy, gave an insightful narrative of how the country is struggling to deal with violations of IP rights, trademarks and copyright, she said, “India is a victim of piracy rather than being hauled by piracy. Statistics indicate that the maximum online piracy, copies of movies and music happens of work done in the Indian industry. As a nation we must confront and address these challenges on an immediate basis.”

“Going forward, we need to safeguard the vast knowledge data base of private knowledge and public knowledge through dual roles of innovation: innovation by chance and innovation by choice,” said, Mr. Prabuddha Ganguly, MHRD, IPR Chair Professor of Tezpur Central University while highlighting that open innovation and knowledge pool in the field of creation and exploration of social good is the need of the hour.

Concluding the session, Prof. Reto Hilty, Director Max Plank Institute for Innovation and Competition, Germany, said, “The real driver of innovation is the market. Innovation is always driven in accordance to market demand and competition. However, caution should be observed with the impact of over protection of IP. If markets work properly legal intervention will be rarely needed.”

The two-day workshop had interesting sessions and insightful exchanges on state innovation and IPR Policy, peer production and the sharing economy, policies and practices of film industry in India and China, software industry, pharmaceutical industry and the protection of plant varieties.

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