World Intellectual Property (IP) Day, observed annually on April 26, celebrates the critical role that IP plays in driving innovation and creativity. This year’s theme – Reach for the Gold: IP and Sports – recognized how competition on and off the field propels groundbreaking innovation. Below are examples of how IP Progress’ partners and other leading organizations supported and celebrated innovation during this year’s World IP Day:
- The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) housed a collection of resources, including notable events, blog posts and a message from Director Francis Gurry to promote the role of IP rights in advancing innovation. WIPO also profiled several individuals who have benefitted from IP and recognize its role in driving innovation, including a sports equipment executive, a world record-holding freediver, a former Olympian and a team of sports medicine technology innovators.
- In an open letter to WIPO Director Gurry, the Property Rights Alliance, along with 76 other organizations – such as fellow IP Progress partners CEDICE, Free Market Foundation, Institute for Competitiveness and the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs – emphasized the “essential” nature of IP rights and urged WIPO to do more to ensure the “voices of innovation” are heard in policy debates. The piece underscored not only the amazing inventions spurred by IP, but also the economic impact, noting “IP-intensive industries are responsible for generating nearly 40 percent of the combined U.S. and EU GDP.”
- The Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC), which releases an annual International Intellectual Property Index, convened 71 U.S. organizations to reiterate the importance of a strong IP system for innovators and economic development. GIPC also published a blog post related to innovation in sports, which noted, “IP enhances performance by way of patents, designs, trademarks, and copyrights…enabling the investments that turn on the lights on game night, build the massive arenas, enhance the safety of the athletes, and broadcast their greatest moments to the world.”
World IP Day continues to serve as an important annual moment to reflect on the importance of promoting and supporting IP rights for years to come. This year’s observance brought forward exciting examples of advances in sports, underscoring the role that IP plays in delivering societal breakthroughs.