The legal framework for intellectual property (IP) is complex, as well as strategies for effective technology intelligence. Therefore, it is essential to understand the main national, regional and international entities with competencies and take advantage of their specialised information resources. The main governmental organisations related to IP are:

  • WIPO: World Intellectual Property Organization. It is a self-funding agency of the United Nations, with 193 member states and is in charge of administering more than twenty international treaties, offering knowledge protection, dispute resolution and access to international databases.
  • EPO: European Patent Office. It is the European body in charge of European patent applications and examination, enabling inventors, researchers and companies from around the world to obtain protection for their inventions in up to 44 countries through a centralised and uniform procedure that requires just one application. Offers a large number of open tools for technology monitoring.
  • EUIPO: European Union Intellectual Property Office. It is the European Institution responsible for the registration and protection of community trademarks and designs and carries out extensive activities in harmonizing registration practices and developing common tools.
  • EAPO: Eurasian Patent Organization. The main objective of the Organization and its Patent Office is to provide legal protection for inventions in the Contracting States on the basis of the single Eurasian patent.
  • GCC: Patent Office of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf.
  • ARIPO: African Regional Intellectual Property Organization. It is an inter-governmental organization (IGO) that facilitates cooperation among member states in intellectual property matters, with the objective of pooling financial and human resources, and seeking technological advancement for economic, social, technological, scientific and industrial development. 
  • OAPI: African Intellectual Property Organization.
  • UPOV: International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants. It is an intergovernmental organization with headquarters in Geneva (Switzerland). Its mission is to provide and promote an effective system of plant variety protection, with the aim of encouraging the development of new varieties of plants, for the benefit of society.

Regarding the national sphere, each country has a national office responsible for regulation and management of intellectual property rights (IPR). The WIPO provides an up-to-date directory.
Learn how to select the most appropriate office and explore information sources to take advantage of technology monitoring value towards innovation and business internationalisation with #MoocVT.

In addition, support programs such as the Latin America IPR SME Helpdesk help companies, to identify the regulatory framework for intellectual and industrial property rights in each country and its impact on business internationalisation.