Understanding the relevant framework of intellectual property protection and access and benefit-sharing - opportunities and limitations for research in the field of genetic resources

28 April 2010

a course organized by the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property (external course)

flyer (PDF, 152kb)


the participants shall learn:

  • what does a researcher in the field of genetic resources have to know about patents and "access and benefit-sharing"?
  • what are the checks and balances provided for by the "access and benefit-sharing" regime regarding the use of genetic  resources and traditional knowledge?
  • what is the relation of access and benefit-sharing with patent law?
  • "declaration of source": What is it all about and what must be observed?
  • who are the relevant authorities in Switzerland?
  • what are the possibilities of international technology transfer in the area of genetic resources?


The relevant legal regime of intellectual property protection and of access and benefit sharing regarding genetic resources has recently undergone important changes. The aim of these changes is to find a better balance of rights and obligations of all stakeholders involved in transboundary research in the context of genetic resources. It is indispensable for any researcher in that field to know about the applicable rules in order to be able to use the opportunities provided by them, and to avoid infringing any of the emerging legal provisions.


09h50   Welcome and opening 
             Dr. Ingo Meitinger, Head Training & International Cooperation, Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property (IPI), Chair 
10h00   Access and benefit-sharing in the context of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
             Dr. Marco D'Alessandro, Scientific collaborator, Waste, Substances and Biotechnology Divison, Federal Office for the Environment
10h30   The legal framework on genetic resources for food and agriculture 
              Dr. François Pythoud, Head, International Sustainable Agriculture, Federal Office for Agriculture
11h00    Coffee Break
11h30    Particularities of patenting of inventions entailing genetic resources 
              Dr. Claudia Mund, Legal Advisor, Legal Services Patents & Designs, IPI
12h00    Q&A / Discussion - Chair
12h30     Lunch Break
14h00    ABS user measures in Switzerland 
              Prof. Dr. Daniel Kraus, University of Neuchâtel, Chair
14h30    IP and ABS: Declaration of Source - State of Play at the National and International Level 
              Dr. Martin Girsberger, Head IP & Sustainable Development/Dr. Benny Müller, Legal Advisor, IP & Sustainable Development, IPI
15h00    Coffee Break
15h30    ABS - Challenges and Options for Academic Research 
              Dr. iur. Susette Biber, MAE, Leader of the ABS project of the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT)
15h50    Experiences of Technology Transfer Offices (TTO's)
              Dr. Olivier Deloche, Scientific associate, UNITEC
16h10    Q&A / Discussion - Chair
16h30    Closing remarks - Chair
16h45    End of seminar 

general information

Date: 28 April 2010

Schedule: 09:50 - 16:45

Location: Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property, Bern

Credit points: 0.5  (Scientific activities, external)

Evaluation: Active participation

Registration cost and travel expenses: The doctoral program will reimburse the registration cost (CHF 150) and the incurred travel expenses to registered Ph.D. students in the doctoral program.

To be eligible for reimbursement you should fill in the course and congress ECTS credit points validation form and join the attestation of attendance. Please send the original tickets (no copies, except for the general abonnement) with the reimbursement form  to Dr. Christiane Bobillier.  No reimbursement for bus, taxi or car travel expenses will be paid.


Further information and registration are available here.    Deadline: 14 April 2010

The doctoral program will reimburse the registration cost (CHF 150) and the incurred travel expenses to registered Ph.D. students in the doctoral program