IP Australia is looking at ways the intellectual property (IP) system can better support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to benefit from and protect their Indigenous Knowledge (IK).
Our IK project work is set out in our Indigenous Knowledge Work Plan 2020-21. We have publications, research and consultations on a number of ideas to support the protection of IK in the IP system. To receive updates about the our on-going work on IK, join our mail list.
Our Indigenous Knowledge policy work is looking at different options relating to Indigenous Knowledge and the IP system. Information about our current and previous IK consultations can be found on the Consultation page.
- Our Indigenous Knowledge Work Plan 2020-21 outlines potential initiatives to support protection of IK in the IP system. Stakeholders supported these initiatives during our 2018-19 consultations.
- Our IK Consultation 2021 ran from 23 February to 31 May 2021, we recieved a lot of valuable feedback and will publish consultation insights shortly.
We are chairing a cross departmental working group which is conducting a scoping study to assess if stand-alone legislation could help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people protect and commercialise their IK.
- We are developing new educational materials to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people understand the IP system, and increase awareness about the use and misuse of IK.
- To better understand the economic value of IK, we commissioned the report: Estimating the Market Value of Indigenous Knowledge and released a series of insights to share some of the findings.
Find out more about our Indigenous Knowledge work in the publications below.
- Indigenous Knowledge Consultation Paper 2021 – IP Australia’s IK Consultation Paper 2021 provides information about the potential options and changes we consulted on from 23 February to 31 May 2021.
- Indigenous Knowledge Work Plan 2020-21 – IP Australia's Work Plan outlines the work we will be doing in relation to a range of IK initiatives in 2020 and 2021.
- An executive summary of Options for IP Australia’s Indigenous Advisory Panel and Indigenous Protocols and Processes of Consent relevant to Trade Marks - two research papers produced for IP Australia by Terri Janke and Company to inform our policy development on potential changes to the way we administer the trade mark system.
- Estimating the Market Value of Indigenous Knowledge – IP Australia commissioned the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR) at the Australian National University to produce a report that identifies approaches to measuring the economic value of Indigenous Knowledge in an Australian context. The report is an independent exploration of the literature and evidence base around approaches to market valuation of aspects of Indigenous Knowledge. Some key findings from this report are summarised in shorter form in our Insights series:
- Consultation Report 2018-19 – Following the conclusion of the Indigenous Knowledge Consultations on 1 February 2019, IP Australia undertook further work based on stakeholder responses. Our consultation report, Protection of Indigenous Knowledge in the Intellectual Property System, provides a summary record of the feedback we received through our roundtables, written submissions, and online survey.
- Consultation Paper 2018-19 – From September 2018 to 1 February 2019 IP Australia sought comments from stakeholders with an interest in how Indigenous Knowledge is protected, used and managed. Our aim was to identify policy options that relate to the IP responsibilities of IP Australia and help to promote the cultural integrity and economic potential of Indigenous Knowledge.
- Indigenous Knowledge: Issues for Protection and Management – An independent Discussion Paper by Terri Janke and Company. This paper explores the relationship between tradition-based knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and issues of IP, cultural heritage and economic empowerment.
- Nanga Mai Arung/Dream Shield – IP Australia's 2014 guide to IP rights for Indigenous businesses. This publication is currently under review and will be redeveloped.
IP Australia acknowledges the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples of Australia. We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which our agency is located and where we conduct our business. We pay our respects to ancestors and Elders, past, present and emerging. IP Australia acknowledges Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ unique cultural and spiritual relationships to the land, waters and seas and their rich contribution to society.