The fundamental purpose of the my project is to understand and elucidate the theory, motivations, objectives, and expected impact of the new draft Ecuadorian intellectual property (IP) law, entitled the “Organic Code for the Social Economy of Knowledge, Creativity and Innovation” (“Código Ingenios”). Research focuses especially on components of the Código that are relevant to Andean agricultural practices, food sovereignty, and traditional knowledge. However, the project also broadly investigates how the Código could represent a reconceptualisation of legal frameworks granting IP rights, within Ecuador, regionally, and internationally.

Given the project’s essential emphasis on farming and traditional Andean ways of life, it is primarily devoted to unpacking how both IP law generally and the Código Ingenios in particular intertwine with agriculture. Thus, I analyse the provisions of the Código that pertain to plant breeders’ rights; patents; traditional knowledge protections; and access to genetic resources. 

Additionally, the project endeavours to: (1) elaborate a history of the Código and how it intertwines with the indigenous Andean concept of “buen vivir” (“good living” or “living well”); (2) describe how the Código characterizes current international avatars of “intellectual property,” “development,” and “economy,” and how and why it would replace these dominant conceptualisations; and (3) understand how Ecuadorians wish to redefine IP.