In the 1970’s and 1980’s the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) organized a series of meetings concerning the intellectual property protection of folklore, as a result of which the UNESCO-WIPO Committee of Governmental Experts on the Intellectual Property Aspects of the Protection of Expressions of Folklore adopted, in Geneva in July 1982, the Model Provisions for National Laws on the Protection of Expressions of Folklore Against Illicit Exploitation and Other Prejudicial Actions.
In addition, the General Conference of UNESCO adopted at its 25th Session in 1989, the Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional Cultures and Folklore, providing for measures that may be taken by the States for the identification, conservation, preservation and dissemination of folklore, its protection and the development of international cooperation.
On the basis of the above-mentioned Model Provisions and Recommendation, a number of member States of UNESCO and WIPO - particularly, developing countries - have introduced legal, administrative and other measures for the preservation and protection of folklore.
During the joint sessions of the WIPO Committee of Experts on a Possible Protocol to the Berne Convention and the WIPO Committee of Experts on a Possible Instrument for the Protection of the Rights of Performers and Producers of Phonograms, held in Geneva in February 1996, the delegations of a number of developing countries proposed that the issues of the protection of expressions of folklore should be addressed again at the international level. As a result of the discussions that followed, the Committees unanimously recommended to the Governing Bodies of WIPO that provision should be made for the organization of an international forum in order to explore issues concerning the
preservation and protection of expressions of folklore, intellectual property aspects of folklore, and the harmonization of the different regional interests. After the adoption of the recommendation, it was stated by some delegations that, due to the subject matter of the proposed forum, the involvement of UNESCO would be desirable.
Both the Director General of WIPO and the representative of UNESCO who attended the said joint session of the Committees expressed readiness to cooperate in this matter, and, in June 1996, final agreement was reached between the two Organizations on the joint organization of the UNESCO-WIPO World Forum on the Protection of Folklore. At the invitation of the Government of Thailand, the World Forum was organized by UNESCO and WIPO in cooperation with the Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce, Government of Thailand, in Phuket, Thailand, from Apri18 to 10, 1997.
- 1967, 1982, 1984: attempts to provide international protection for folklore by intellectual property rights
- Economic exploitation of expressions of folklore: the European experience
- Economic exploitation of expressions of folklore: the experience of the Americas
- General information and preliminary programme
- International protection of expressions of folklore: UNESCO follow-up to the 1989 Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional Culture and Folklore
- La protection du folklore par le droit de la propriété industrielle et celui des obligations
- Legal means of protection of expressions of folklore in national legislation: protection of the collection of expressions of folklore; the role of libraries and archives
- Preservation and conservation of expressions of folklore: the experience of Africa
- Preservation and conservation of expressions of folklore: the experience of North America
- Preservation and conservation of expressions of folklore: the experience of the Pacific region
- Protection of those who make available and of those who collect expressions of folklore
- Provisional list of participants
UNESCO-WIPO/FOLK/PKT/97/INF/3 Prov.: English
- The experience of Asia and the Pacific Region
- The experience of Latin America and the Caribbean region in the preservation and conservation of the expressions of folklore
- The experience of Western Europe
- UNESCO/WIPO World Forum on the Protection of Folklore, Phuket, Thailand, April 8 to 10, 1997