Intellectual Property Paradoxes in Pandemic Times Academic Article uri icon


  • The COVID-19 pandemic has presented many paradoxes that raise complex law and policy questions with no satisfactory answers. Policymakers and commentators have already identified many contradictions, ironies and hard-to-reconcile positions at the intersection of international law and global health. This short essay turns to paradoxes in the intellectual property field.The discussion will focus on three paradoxes, all of which relate to each other. The first paradox concerns the difficult policy choices that governments have to make in order to combat COVID-19, including those in the intellectual property field. The second paradox pertains to the simultaneous vulnerability and robustness of the international intellectual property system. The final paradox relates to the need for both stronger and weaker intellectual property standards to combat the global pandemic.

author list (cited authors)

  • Yu, P. K.

complete list of authors

  • Yu, Peter K

publication date

  • January 2022