. "Session 2: Data and Information in the Public Health Sector 11 Introductory Remarks by Session Chair." Open Access and the Public Domain in Digital Data and Information for Science: Proceedings of an International Symposium. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2004.
The following HTML text is provided to enhance online
readability. Many aspects of typography translate only awkwardly to HTML.
Please use the page image
as the authoritative form to ensure accuracy.
Open Access and the Public Domain in Digital Data and Information for Science: Proceedings of an International Symposium
In other words, since exemptions to the intellectual property rights regime are already conceded for education and research purposes, they should be extended to the public health and environment domains as well. Unrestricted availability to public information should be allowed because upstream information and scientific knowledge is mainly publicly funded.
If the global North-South divide is to be overcome in any field of human society, the unrestricted and free access to public information and the primacy of sustainable human development benefit over short-term individual profits are required. This appears to be the only way to convert threats into opportunities and switch from a zero-sum game to one that is positive. This requires developing countries to join together to protect and enlarge the public domain and promote open access. The crucial obstacle in this respect remains the lack of political will of the global leadership.