Experts' meeting on the Right to Enjoy the Benefits of Scientific Progress and its Applications
On 16-17 July the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation (EIUC) hosted an experts' meeting on the right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications (REBSP). The meeting was co-sponsored and jointly organized by the EIUC and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
Mr. Vladimir Volodin (UNESCO) opens the Experts' Meeting
Mr. Vladimir Volodin (UNESCO) and Dr. George Ulrich (EIUC).
The purpose of the Venice meeting was to further elucidate the normative content of the REBSP (Article 15, paragraph 1, b of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights) and to clarify the relevant State obligations. Its aim was furthermore to achieve progress in the preparation of a document on the scope of application and content of the REBSP, which could help the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights to elaborate a future a General Comment on the REBSP and to take it into account in discussing State periodic reports.
The meeting was build on previous meetings which took place in Amsterdam (June 2007) and in Galway (November 2008). These meetings examined the interdependence and interrelationship of the REBSP with other human rights, explored the tension between the REBSP and the protection of intellectual property, and also discussed the links between climate change, environmental protection, and the REBSP.
38 international experts, including professors, independent experts, members of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as well as representatives of international organisations and bodies concerned, took part in the meeting. The high level debates and discussions made the meeting a great success. In the end the participants adopted the Venice Statement on the Right to Enjoy the Benefits of Scientific Progress and its Applications . This document outlines the contemporary relevance of the REBSP, its conceptual challenges, some sample States obligations flowing from the right, and the next steps to be taken by different actors in order to further advance the realisation of the right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications.