Introduction: Recognizing Diversity in Intellectual Property
Additional Document Info
Cambridge University Press 2015. I. Recognizing Diversity: The Ongoing Challenge Diversity is arguably one of the most prominent features of globalization. Indeed, the integration of markets and the changes brought by the large-scale diffusion of information and communication technologies have brought the debate on diversity to the forefront. As diversity has permeated into a more prominent social phenomenon, awareness of the diverse segments of society based on different races, genders, religions, nationalities, and much more and the profound socioeconomic impact of diversity has grown. In several parts of the world, diversity is portrayed by politicians and legislators as a powerful hallmark of political, economic, and social integration. Unity in diversity and racial harmony are examples of slogans that positively portrays diversity and highlight the importance of diversity in a multi-cultural society. Despite the rise of diversity to an internationally relevant topic of attention, however, one cannot ignore that a disturbing trend of denial of resources continues to be commonplace with respect to minorities and certain marginalized groups. In particular, racial, gender, and religious-based minorities or groups of people from specific countries or regions of the world continue to have limited access to resources, opportunities, or simply knowledge and information. This lack of true inclusiveness manifests itself primarily as differences in entitlements, which work to either exclude or not fully include minorities and diverse groups in the access to and allocation of economic and social power. Not surprisingly, minorities and marginalized groups have denounced these differences throughout the years, both directly and through their advocates. More specifically, they have requested that diversity-related issues play a more dominant role - at times individually and other times more comprehensively - in the national and international debates leading to norm setting and in the application and interpretation of these norms. In response to these requests, often times the postulated solution is to integrate diversity with the prevailing mainstream.