The TRIPS Waiver: Intellectual Property, Access to Essential Medicines, and the Coronavirus COVID-19

Matthew Rimmer
37 min readDec 9, 2021


Research Symposium

Australian Centre for Health Law Research

QUT Faculty of Business and Law

Friday, 10 December 2021

9:00 am to 5:00 pm

Z1064, Gibson Room, Level 10, Z Block

QUT Gardens Point Campus


This research event focuses upon the geopolitical debate over access to essential medicines during the coronavirus public health crisis. This event brings together researchers, experts and scholars working in the field of access to essential medicines — ranging through the disciplines of intellectual property, public health law, human rights, international law, and trade law.

There has been a remarkable effort to engage in research and development of vaccines, treatments, and diagnostics in response to the coronavirus public health crisis. Yet, there has been global concern over ‘vaccine nationalism’, ‘vaccine inequity’, ‘vaccine hoarding’, and ‘vaccine apartheid’ during the public health crisis. Civil society organisations — such as the People’s Vaccine Alliance Oxfam, MSF, Human Rights Watch, and Universities Allied for Essential Medicines — and the labor movement of unions have lobbied for a People’s Vaccine. As a result of a concern about the devastating impact of COVID-19, South Africa and India have put forward a proposal for a TRIPS Waiver in respect of intellectual property and technologies, such as vaccines, treatments, and diagnostics. Over a hundred countries have thus far supported the proposal for a TRIPS Waiver.

After taking an ‘America First’ approach under the Trump Administration, the United States Government under the Biden Administration has revised the national position and supported a TRIPS Waiver for Vaccines. After some deliberation, the governments of New Zealand and Australia have supported this option. Key European nations — such as Germany — have resisted the adoption of a TRIPS Waiver. The European Union has put forward a counter-proposal to the TRIPS Waiver — focusing on intellectual property flexibilities. A number of other countries such as the United Kingdom have been reluctant to support a TRIPS Waiver. There also remain a few nations — like Canada — which have been uncommitted to a position in the geopolitical debate over the TRIPS Waiver. Pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology developers, and medical diagnostics firms have been lobbying against a TRIPS Waiver.

This event will also explore the key disciplines of intellectual property — including patent law, trade mark law, copyright law, and related rights, such as confidential information, trade secrets, and database protection. There will be a strong focus upon public health law, policy and institutions. There will also be a larger consideration of international law — particularly trade-related agreements, such as the TRIPS Agreement, the Doha Declaration, the WTO General Council Decision, and the TRIPS Waiver. There will also be a consideration of the role of international institutions during the coronavirus crisis — such as UNAIDS, the World Health Organization, the World Trade Organization, and the World Intellectual Property Organization.

This research workshop will also consider the regulation of data and information in respect of coronavirus. There will be a discussion of vaccine hesitancy, COVID-19 misinformation, and COVID-19 fraud. In its consideration of the ‘info-demic’, the event will draw upon the disciplines of health law, consumer protection, media regulation, and criminal law.

This event is hosted by the Australian Centre for Health Law Research (ACHLR) — based at the QUT Faculty of Business and Law. This event is part of the Centre’s research activity in respect of the legal, ethical, and public policy dimensions of the coronavirus.


This event will be subject to QUT’s management plans and rules in light of COVID-19. There will be a limited physical audience for this event — capped at 30 people. Registrations are only required for physical attendance of the event.

This event is a hybrid event — with live physical presentations by Queensland-based speakers, supplemented by pre-recorded presentations by interstate and international speakers.

The physical presentations will be recorded by the AV Unit of QUT, and made available afterwards. A few interstate and international speakers will be delivering their talks by video.

Picture Credit: Oxfam, People’s Vaccine Campaign (but it should be noted that this is not an Oxfam event).


We acknowledge the Turrbal and Yugara peoples as the First Nation owners of the lands of where QUT now stands. For thousands of years the Turrbal and Yugara people have gathered along the banks of Maiwar, the Brisbane River, to share their knowledge and stories. We pay our respects to their Elders, lores, customs, and creation spirits. We recognise that these lands where QUT now stands have always been places of teaching, researching and learning. We acknowledge the important role Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people play within our QUT community. From Moreton Bay, inland as far as the Great Dividing Range near Warwick and Toowoomba. As far north as the Caboolture River including the lands around Brisbane city, Meanjin. Yeru yeru yinala balka bebalka (greeting, come and gather) ngai nuguru nguru (my ancestor spirits) mara makura (share old stories and teachings); nunya birralee (thank you sky country) nunya Biame (thank you God). Welcome to the traditional country of the Turrbal and Yugara people.

Session 1 — Pandemics and Public Health Emergencies (9:00 am — 10:30 am)

9:00 am — 9:20 am

Unmasked: The Politics of Pandemics

Bill Bowtell (by video)


Nature creates viruses. But people and politics create pandemics. And pandemics create new politics. In the 1980s, the toxic politics of the response to HIV/AIDS turned a serious but manageable viral threat into a global pandemic that took the lives of 32 million people and brought illness and suffering to millions more. In 2020, COVID-19 emerged into a world where many governments had failed to heed the lessons of the past, and so they were unprepared and unable to stop its global spread. But some countries had learned the harsh lessons of HIV/AIDS, and had contained SARS1, Ebola, Zika and MERS. When coronavirus hit, they knew what to do to save their people from avoidable infections and deaths.

In Unmasked: the Politics of Pandemics, Bill Bowtell draws on his four decades of experience in the global and local politics of public health to examine why some countries got it right with coronavirus while others collapsed into misery and chaos. He looks closely at the critical weeks when poor planning brought Australia to the brink of disaster, until the Australian people forced their governments to put public health before politics. Unmasked reveals how and why our politicians failed us during the greatest public health crisis of this century to date.


Bill Bowtell AO is one of Australia’s foremost health policy strategists. As senior adviser to the Australian health minister, Bill Bowtell was an architect of Australia’s world-renowned response to the emergence of HIV/AIDS which brought together affected communities, researchers, clinicians and politicians, changing the course of the Australian pandemic and saving thousands of lives. For over four decades, Bill Bowtell has served in many roles and capacities at the intersection of health, development and politics in Australia and internationally. He served as a senior adviser to Australian prime minister Paul Keating. From 2005, Bill Bowtell led the advocacy organisation Pacific Friends of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and worked with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to increase funding and support for the Global Fund. Since early 2020, Bill Bowtell has written, broadcast and tweeted extensively on the Australian and international response to the coronavirus pandemic.

9:20 am — 9:40 am

Themes and Motifs from a Pandemic: The Independent Panel on Pandemic Preparedness

Associate Professor Wendy Bonython (Bond University)


On 31 December 2019, a Chinese financial media outlet published an article on a notice by the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission, advising Wuhan’s hospitals of patients with pneumonia whose infection could not be accounted for. Those media reports triggered international global disease surveillance networks alerting the world to the emergence of a new disease, now known to all of us as COVID-19.

In the nearly two years since, strengths and weaknesses within technology governance and regulation, global institutions, and domestic governments have been laid bare. Alongside breathtaking achievements in genomic sequencing, public health modelling, development of supportive care and — perhaps most significantly — vaccine development, we have seen abundant examples of systemic failures, encompassing issues as diverse as domestic policy decisions to divest from critical research and development and infrastructure, through to poor global governance and regulation of social media and other technology based platforms, diminution of the authority and efficacy of global institutions, and widespread diminished public trust and confidence in governments, institutions, and science.

Not all of these strengths and weaknesses have been as might be expected. Some countries with high levels of economic development and stability, traditionally expected to be most resilient in the case of global shock such as a pandemic, have performed more poorly than their less socio-economically developed counterparts; while other situations have clearly manifested prior predictions about the effects of long-term erosion of infrastructure and capability at the policy level, and endemic governance weakness.

How do we make sense of all the isolated incidents and accidents of the pandemic on a global scale, and translate them into lessons learned in anticipation of the next one, which epidemiologists assure will come, and probably sooner than we might anticipate? Analysis of the key themes of the Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response Report reveals a number of themes which may provide a useful lens through which to review the past twenty-four months of pandemic responsiveness. Those themes — time, information, and equity — variously account for many of the missed opportunities and wrong steps that have arisen during the pandemic, and may enhance preparation in anticipation of the almost inevitable next one.


Associate Professor Wendy Bonython teaches and researches in the Law and Medicine Programs at Bond University, at the intersection of law and ethics, medicine, and technology. She has a PhD in Molecular Medicine, as well as post graduate qualifications in Law, and is an admitted legal practitioner, with experience working in medical research and health administration, as well as higher education and consulting. Her research interests include regulation of medical and healthcare devices and services, liability for healthcare and service failures, governance and regulation of medical and personal information, and governance and regulation of research. She is a member of the Defence Department of Veterans’ Affairs Human Research Ethics Committee.

9:40 am — 10:00 am

The Two Track Approach to Revise the International Health Regulations and the Proposed Pandemic Treaty (or Can We Have Our Cake and Eat it Too?)

Professor Sara Davies (Griffith University)


For over 60 years the International Health Regulations has been the World Health Organization’s only instrument available to coordinate international response to public health emergencies, including novel infectious disease outbreak events like SARS-CoV-2. The IHR has undergone multiple revisions, most recently in 2005. Since those revisions the IHR has come under scrutiny in response to health emergencies including the H1N1 outbreak (2009), MERS outbreak (2012), Ebola outbreaks (2014, 2018, 2019) and the Zika outbreak (2016), to name a few. As it became clear that the Covid-19 endemic was going to become a pandemic, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus began to raise the prospect of an international legal instrument that could manage, specifically, pandemic events. However, with the exception of the European Union, there is no clear support for a new treaty beyond that of revising the IHR to work more efficiently and effectively. Indeed, the 2021 World Health Assembly was only able to secure a resolution to create a working group to discuss the pandemic treaty on the proviso that the IHR was also part of this discussion. This has led to the specially convened WHO Working Group on Strengthening WHO Preparedness for and Response to Health Emergencies managing a ‘two track approach’. This paper will examine the necessity of the two track approach, specifically, why the pandemic treaty proposal has endured despite significant opposition.


Dr Sara E. Davies is a Professor at School of Government and International Relations, Griffith University, Australia and an Adjunct Professor at the Gender Peace and Security Centre, School of Social Sciences, Monash University.

Sara is an International Relations (IR) scholar with a specific focus on Global Health Governance and the Women, Peace and Security agenda. Sara has been an Australian Research Council Discovery Australian Postgraduate Award Scholar (2008–2012) and an Australian Research Council Future Fellow (2014–2018). Sara’s research career has been devoted to identifying the political conditions that deny humans access to civil, economic and social human rights. Her research has focused on situations where humans face immense vulnerability: disease outbreaks events, gender-based and sexual violence in conflict, and forced displacement. She has recently authored Containing Contagion: Politics of Disease Surveillance in Southeast Asia (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2019).

Session 2 — COVID-19, Patent Law, and the TRIPS Waiver (11 am — 12:30 pm)

11:00 am — 11:20 am

The Proposal of India and South Africa for a TRIPS Waiver

Dr Muhammad Zaheer Abbas (QUT)


Situations like the COVID-19 outbreak require international solidarity and broader multilateral collaboration. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic was marked by unilateral nationalistic approaches, advanced purchase agreements, production restrictions and unequal access leading to international inequalities. Pharmaceutical and vaccine manufacturing corporations are inclined to continue their business-as-usual approach to intellectual property (IP) protection even during a pandemic. The routine application of IP protections restricts diversified global production and universal distribution of critically needed health technologies. IP protections bar national governments, especially in resource-poor countries, from adopting a comprehensive strategy to have timely, adequate, and affordable access to COVID-related health technologies as they can be subjected to court litigation and complaints under the WTO rules. In October 2020, India and South Africa submitted to the WTO TRIPS Council a proposal for a temporary waiver of certain provisions of the TRIPS Agreement. This paper provides an overview of the waiver proposal and analyses the evolution of the push for this proposal in light of formal and informal discussions at the WTO. This paper reviews key objections to the waiver proposal and responds to arguments put forward by some governments and patentee corporations against the waiver proposal. This paper argues that the proposed TRIPS waiver is critical for bringing an end to the pandemic by stimulating global manufacturing of and expediting equitable access to vaccines and other COVID-related health technologies.


Dr. Muhammad Zaheer Abbas is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Faculty of Business and Law, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Brisbane, Australia. In this role, he is working with Professor Matthew Rimmer on his Australian Research Council Discovery Project ‘Inventing the Future: Intellectual Property and 3D Printing’. In March 2020, he completed PhD in Law at QUT as a recipient of QUT Postgraduate Research Award (QUTPRA). He has published 27 refereed articles, mostly related to intellectual property protection and the public interest. He has also presented 38 conference papers on related topics.

Dr Abbas has undertaken extensive research on public health dimensions of intellectual property laws. He has written about TRIPS Agreement’s public health flexibilities like compulsory licensing (Journal of World Intellectual Property, 2018), parallel importation (Journal of Generic Medicines, 2021), and patent opposition (Global Public Health, 2020). He has evaluated the possibility of invoking trade-related security exceptions (ANZSIL Perspective, 2021), the practical implications of ‘vaccine nationalism’ (South Views 2020), and the importance of localized supply chains (South Views, 2021). He has also analyzed policy options like patent pooling (Journal of Law and the Biosciences, 2020) and tiered pricing (Journal of Generic Medicines, 2020). Abbas has also considered the implications of free trade agreements (Australasian Dispute Resolution Journal, 2018) and evergreening (Journal of Generic Medicines, 2019) for affordable and equitable access to essential medicines. He has been providing expert commentary on the issue of access to vaccines and other COVID-related health technologies during the current pandemic.

11:20 am — 11:40 am

A TRIPS Waiver for Vaccines? President Joe Biden, Intellectual Property, Access to Essential Medicines, and the Coronavirus COVID-19

Professor Matthew Rimmer (QUT)


After the ‘America First’ approach taken by the Trump administration, Progressive Democrats pressed the Biden Administration to offer support for the TRIPS Waiver. In the Senate, former Presidential candidates Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont) and Senator Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts) — and other leading progressive Democrats — were champions of a TRIPS Waiver. Sanders and his colleagues pleaded with President Joe Biden: ‘Your Administration has the opportunity to reverse the damage done by the Trump Administration to our nation’s global reputation and restore America’s public health leadership on the world stage’.

After much deliberation, the new Biden Administration has agreed to support a version of the TRIPS Waiver, which is focused on vaccines. The United States Trade Representative Ambassador Katherine Tai commented upon the decision:

This is a global health crisis, and the extraordinary circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic call for extraordinary measures. The Administration believes strongly in intellectual property protections, but in service of ending this pandemic, supports the waiver of those protections for COVID-19 vaccines.

Katharine Tai insisted: ‘The Administration’s aim is to get as many safe and effective vaccines to as many people as fast as possible.’ She observed: ‘As our vaccine supply for the American people is secured, the Administration will continue to ramp up its efforts — working with the private sector and all possible partners — to expand vaccine manufacturing and distribution’. The Ambassador also said that the United States administration ‘will also work to increase the raw materials needed to produce those vaccines.’ Subsequently, Katherine Tai has also been promoting a ‘peace clause’ to resolve conflicts over intellectual property and access to essential medicines during the COVID-19 crisis.

There were a number of countries who followed the leadership of the United States on the TRIPS Waiver. After previously being non-committal on the topic, Jacinda Ardern’s New Zealand Government said that it would support a TRIPS Waiver for vaccines. After further debate, Scott Morrison’s Australian Government ended its equivocation on the TRIPS Waiver, and agreed to support Biden’s proposal for a TRIPS waiver for vaccines.

In October 2021, Senator Brian Schatz — a Democrat from Hawaii — led a bipartisan group of 14 Senators calling on President Joe Biden to strengthen United States leadership on global vaccination and efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic: ‘We are deeply concerned about the inequitable access to these vaccines and other essential supplies across the world and what that means for more avoidable infections, deaths, disruption to the global economy, and the risk of new variants.’ The Senators urged President Biden ‘to do more to lead global efforts to end this pandemic and increase global vaccine access’. The politicians also asked the President ‘to place a stronger focus on development of and access to COVID-19 diagnostics and treatments and strengthening health systems worldwide.’ The group of Senators stressed that ‘more significant U.S. leadership, urgency, and accountability is essential for a more effective global response to the pandemic.’


Dr Matthew Rimmer is a Professor in Intellectual Property and Innovation Law at the Faculty of Business and Law, at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT). He has published widely on copyright law and information technology, patent law and biotechnology, access to medicines, plain packaging of tobacco products, intellectual property and climate change, Indigenous Intellectual Property, and intellectual property and trade. He is undertaking research on intellectual property and 3D printing; the regulation of robotics and artificial intelligence; and intellectual property and public health (particularly looking at the coronavirus COVID-19). His work is archived at QUT ePrints, SSRN Abstracts, Bepress Selected Works, and Open Science Framework.

Rimmer is a chief investigator in the QUT Australian Centre for Health Law Research (QUT ACHLR), and the QUT Centre for Behavioural Economics, Society, and Technology (QUT BEST). He is a member of the QUT Centre for the Digital Economy — which is part of the QUT Centre for Future Enterprise; the QUT Digital Media Research Centre (QUT DMRC), the QUT Centre for Justice; and the QUT Centre for Clean Energy Technologies and Processes. Rimmer is a chief investigator, and co-director of the legal program in the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence on Achieving the Tobacco Endgame (CREATE) (2020–2025) — a transnational research network. Rimmer was previously the leader of the QUT Intellectual Property and Innovation Law Research Program from 2015–2020 (QUT IPIL).

Over the past two decades, Rimmer has investigated intellectual property and access to medicines in a range of contexts. He has considered conflicts in relation to HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, tropical diseases, non-communicable diseases such as cancer, the SARS virus, avian influenza, ebola, and the coronavirus COVID-19. Rimmer is a co-editor of a collection on access to medicines entitled Incentives for Global Public Health: Patent Law and Access to Essential Medicines (Cambridge University Press, 2010). The work considers the intersection between international law, public law, and intellectual property law, and highlights a number of new policy alternatives — such as medical innovation prizes, the Health Impact Fund, patent pools, open source drug discovery, and the philanthropic work of the (Red) Campaign, the Gates Foundation, and the Clinton Foundation. Rimmer is also a co-editor of Intellectual Property and Emerging Technologies: The New Biology (Edward Elgar, 2012). Rimmer has undertaken extensive research on intellectual property and access to essential medicines. He has written about the Race to Patent the SARS Virus (Melbourne Journal of International Law, 2004). Rimmer has analysed Canada’s pioneering regime for the export of pharmaceutical drugs (Public Health Ethics, 2008). He has also evaluated the system for priority review vouchers (WIPO Journal, 2012). Rimmer has also considered the impact of the Trans-Pacific Partnership on access to essential medicines (IP Journal, 2017). Rimmer has been providing expert commentary on intellectual property, access to essential medicines, and the coronavirus COVID-19.

11:40 am — 12:00 pm

Climate Change Technology and the WTO: Will a TRIPS Waiver Support Technology Transfer?

Associate Professor Felicity Deane (QUT)


Technology transfer to developing countries requires a strong commitment to support the uptake of new technologies. This commitment is required from both developed and developing countries alike. It also requires a commitment from private corporations. There is a debate about whether intellectual property protection should apply where there is an international interest in sharing technology. On one hand, IP protection supports research and development by incentivising companies to incur costs associated with it. On the other hand, one could rightfully argue that where there is a technology available to potentially halt or reverse catastrophic climate change, then it should be openly available. Within my presentation I will suggest that the argument to suspend intellectual property protections provided by the TRIPS Agreement provides something of a distraction from more important debates surrounding mitigation technologies. Indeed, the contradictory ends of open trade and climate change mitigation requires urgent attention, to resolve the ongoing conflict that pursuing both objectives creates. Addressing this in a meaningful way again raises concerns about injustice and inequality, particularly when evaluating fears of carbon leakage. My presentation reviews arguments beginning with the claim that the TRIPS agreement strikes the right balance of protection between private interests and flexibility for WTO members when the agreement obligations are properly implemented at a domestic level.


Dr Felicity Deane is an Associate Professor at the Queensland University of Technology. She has been researching and teaching the law of the World Trade Organization for over a decade and has extensive knowledge of international trade law and practice. Over the past 10 years she has collaborated with industry partners on projects that focus on land use practices in Australia, export markets and climate change. Her first book, Emissions Trading and WTO Law: A Global Analysis, examined the impact of trade rules on climate change market based instruments. Most recently she has been working on projects that evaluate the digitisation of international trade, whilst leading a co-authored monograph entitled ‘Natural Capital, Agriculture and the Law’.

Session 3 — Comparative Debates about the TRIPS Waiver (12:30 pm — 1:30 pm)

12:30 pm — 12:50 pm

The EU Counter-Proposal to the TRIPS Waiver: Opposition, False Promises and Delaying Real Solutions

Associate Professor Aisling McMahon (Maynooth University, Ireland) (by video)


Against the backdrop of significant COVID-19 vaccine inequity between high- and low-income countries, and threats posed by the Omicron variant for the control of COVID-19 everywhere, there is an ongoing and increasing urgency to deliver global equitable access to vaccines and other health technologies for COVID-19. The TRIPS waiver first proposed by India and South Africa in October 2020 sought to offer a pathway to achieve this and would enable the clearing of intellectual property obstacles to facilitate the upscaling of health-technologies including vaccines. However, since the TRIPS waiver was first proposed, now over a year ago, the EU has remained in strong opposition to it.

This paper examines the European Union’s (EU) approach to the TRIPS waiver proposal. Since the outset, the EU has strongly opposed the TRIPS waiver proposal, and more recently, in June 2021 it put forward an alternative proposal for consideration, the so-called EU Counter Proposal. The paper outlines the EU’s opposition to the TRIPS waiver by examining some of its key statements in this context. It will then critically analyse the EU’s counter proposal, which focuses primarily on compulsory licensing as a purported solution in the EU’s view to address issues posed by intellectual property rights in the COVID-19 context. The paper argues that this counter proposal does not offer any real solution to the current obstacles posed by how intellectual property rights are used within the COVID-19 context and is particularly lacking for vaccines. Instead, the EU position has detracted from finding a real solution and has served to delay discussions and the prospect of adopting a TRIPS waiver. The counter proposal has been strongly criticised by civil society and many leading experts, who have deemed it “meaningless” and “wholly inadequate”. Moreover, the EU’s position is increasingly an isolated one, as support increases for the TRIPS waiver globally.

The paper concludes by arguing that the EU should urgently reconsider its position and support the TRIPS waiver, which is vital at this time for moral reasons to address global vaccine inequity and bridge the increasing gap between high- and low-income countries in this context. It is also vital from a self-interested perspective within the EU as without increasing vaccine access everywhere there is likely higher risks of new variants emerging, which may in future be resistant to existing vaccines, threatening control of COVID-19 everywhere.


Dr Aisling McMahon is an Associate Professor of Law at Maynooth University. Her research focuses on health law and intellectual property law. Dr McMahon’s work is particularly interested in the role of intellectual property rights within the health context, including the potential impacts that patents, can have on access to, and delivery of healthcare. She has published widely on these issues within leading international peer reviewed journals, including in the: Journal of Medical Ethics, Medical Law Review, Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, Journal of Law and the Biosciences, and the Intellectual Property Quarterly. Dr McMahon’s work has been funded by sources including: the British Academy/Leverhulme, the Irish Research Council, the Economic and Social Research Council, and the Society of Legal Scholars.

Dr McMahon’s recent work in the COVID-19 context examines the role of patents (and other intellectual property rights) arguing that they act as private governance tools allowing rightsholders significant control to shape access to and delivery of COVID-19 vaccines, diagnostics and therapeutics (Journal of Medical Ethics 2020). Her work has also examined the role and limitations of compulsory licensing laws at a national level in the COVID-19 context (NILQ 2020). Alongside this, together with Siva Thambisetty, Hyo Yoon Kang, Luke McDonagh & Graham Dutfield, their recent co-authored work has argued in favour of a TRIPS waiver, as a necessary and proportionate measure needed at this time, to clear intellectual property barriers enabling companies freedom to operate in upscaling production of COVID-19 vaccines and other health technologies globally. Whilst, her recent work with Susi Geiger, compares current and proposed global institutional mechanisms to increase equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, focusing on their institutional complementarities and overlaps (Journal of Medical Ethics 2021).

12:50 pm — 1:10 pm

The TRIPS Waiver and Free the Vaccine: Universities Allied for Essential Medicines

Dr Jennifer Nguyen and Declan Sakuls (UAEM North America) (by video)


Inequities in COVID-19 vaccine access worldwide and discussions about the TRIPS Waiver have shed further light upon the crucial role that technology transfer can play in improving access to COVID-19-related vaccines and therapeutics. Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM) ( is a student-led non-profit organization that advocates for affordable access to life-saving medicines through equitable licensing practices. UAEM’s global campaign to “Free the Vaccine”, launched at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, advocates for equitable COVID-19 vaccine and therapeutic access worldwide.

Key outputs of the Free the Vaccine campaign include increased public engagement on COVID-19 vaccine accessibility issues, increased dialogue with public and private research institutions regarding equitable technology transfer, growing global support of the TRIPS Waiver, and increasing public awareness of the crucial role that public funds play behind the development of COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics.

With the launch of UAEM’s COVID-19 Mapping Platform ( during the Free the Vaccine campaign, there has been growing public awareness of the significant role that public funding played behind the development of the current COVID-19 vaccines. Pfizer, Moderna, and AstraZeneca each received over $2 billion USD in taxpayer funds as of December 2020 ( Further research estimates found that the AstraZeneca vaccine was 98% supported by taxpayer funds (Keestra et al. 2021). This supports the growing narrative that publicly funded vaccines should be made equitably accessible to the public.

Further discussions on the importance of equitable vaccine access in the pandemic eventually led to the US Biden administration, followed by multiple other countries, supporting the TRIPS Waiver.

Currently, Moderna and the US National Institute of Health (NIH) are in a dispute regarding ownership of the Moderna vaccine, which was developed with the support of NIH co-inventors and over $2.5 billion USD in taxpayer funds ( Without public pressure or government intervention, there is minimal incentive for private corporations to choose a path that could lessen their profits. In this light, the TRIPS Waiver is an important step for the world to take to improve global COVID-19 vaccine accessibility.

With the COVID-19 vaccine being largely supported by public funds, publicly supported technologies should be made equitably accessible to the public. Equitable technology transfer will be critical to enable global access to the COVID-19 vaccine and eventually end the pandemic.


Dr. Jennifer Nguyen is a hospital doctor and clinical instructor at the University of Toronto. She has been an active advocate in the access to medicines field for the past 8 years. She was a global project coordinator for the COVID-19 Mapping Project (, which was incorporated in the World Health Organization’s Health R&D database ( She currently serves as the North American Representative on the Global Executive Committee for Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM). Dr. Nguyen has previously been the Australian Director and Liaison for UAEM Australia, and was a UAEM North American Coordinating Committee Member. She completed a postgraduate General Practice Residency at the University of British Columbia and completed her Bachelor of Science with a Specialization in Biology and Major in East Asian Studies at the University of Western Ontario.


Declan Sakuls is a first-year law student at the University of Victoria and a 2020 graduate of McGill University where he majored in Political Science and joined the McGill UAEM (Universities Allied for Essential Medicines) chapter. He is currently a Coordinating Committee member of UAEM North America, involved primarily in the Moderna FOIA project and the Free the Vaccine Campaign. He participated in every season of the Free the Vaccine Campaign, as an activist, project manager, and as a member of the leadership team. Declan is particularly interested in ensuring global affordable access to COVID-19 vaccines, treatments, and diagnostics and ensuring clinical trial transparency.

1:10 pm — 1:30 pm

The New Zealand Debate about the TRIPS Waiver

Edward Miller (by video)


New Zealand has been praised internationally for the effective of its first-wave covid response, and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has been outspoken on the international stage on the need for an equitable global vaccine rollout. However when India and South Africa proposed the TRIPS waiver in October 2020, the New Zealand Government ignored the demands of the Global South. When questioned by civil society organisations, Trade Minister Damien O’Connor fell back on tired old arguments about the importance of intellectual property protections to safeguard innovation. Alongside new WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, NZ and six other nations worked to develop a “third way” approach based on direct discussions with the pharmaceutical giants, arguably in violation of the Marrakesh Agreement. It was only once President Biden came out in support of a waiver for covid vaccines that the NZ Government moderated its position. Observers argued that this opaque change of position was evidence of the need for a truly independent trade and foreign affairs policy, however subsequent official information requests suggest that NZ’s perceived powerless provided cover for its own private healthcare industry to boost exports.


Edward Miller is the researcher at FIRST Union and spokesperson for It’s Our Future, the peoples’ campaign against dangerous free trade and investment agreements.

Session 4 COVID-19, Consumer Protection, Misinformation, and Fraud (1:30 pm — 3:00 pm)

1:30 pm — 1:50 pm

Vaccine Hesitancy and COVID-19 Misinformation

Samuel Roach (QUT)


The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare reports that vaccines provide ‘the largest potential for controlling’ SARS-CoV-2. However, realising this potential requires that people are vaccinated. ‘Vaccine hesitancy’ is one of four underlying issues that undermine widespread vaccination. This phenomenon is characterised by indecision about or refusal of vaccination, where vaccination services are available.

Vaccine hesitancy is not unique to the COVID-19 pandemic. Organisations dedicated to opposing vaccination, such as the ‘Anti-Vaccination Society’, began emerging in 1798, just two years after Edward Jenner published the first scientific work on vaccination. The concerns raised by such groups are analogous to those heard today. Common themes involve religion, vaccine safety and effectiveness, and the perceived violation of one’s liberty. This presentation will examine the role that these vocal vaccine deniers play in disseminating misinformation, the relationship between misinformation and vaccine hesitancy, and the various interventions available to a government when responding to this phenomenon.


Samuel Roach is an Associate Lecturer and PhD student in the Faculty of Business and Law at the Queensland University of Technology.

His thesis examines the role of law in promoting adult vaccination. Australia has implemented a number of policies aimed at promoting childhood vaccination, however there has been comparatively less emphasis on improving vaccination uptake in the adult population. Using an interdisciplinary approach, he is examining how uptake can be improved without unduly infringing upon individual liberty.

As an Associate Lecturer, Roach developed, implemented and now coordinates the unit ‘COVID-19 and the Law’. This unit is taught in a blended learning environment, utilising multi-media Sway modules and online discussion forums. The unit follows the life cycle of a pandemic, drawing on present-day examples, to develop students’ knowledge of public health law. Using Australia’s response to the coronavirus pandemic as a case study, students develop knowledge of the history of public health law and the entities tasked with pandemic preparedness. The unit also examines the issues associated with pandemic responses, including the inherent tension between executive power and individual rights, and the impact on vulnerable communities. Further, this unit analyses regulatory and ethical requirements relevant to vaccine development and vaccination.

Roach also coordinates the Community Justice Project and International Legal Placement units. These units enable students to experience the real-world application and development of their legal knowledge and skills through participation in a project focused on social justice. Students work in small groups to assist a community legal centre or not-for-profit organisation to develop resources and undertake law reform, community legal education or other service-learning projects. Through these projects, students engage in legal research, draft reports and prepare presentations under the supervision of a lawyer. This unit affords students an authentic learning context in which to complete pro bono work in a real-world legal environment.

Roach has taught undergraduate law students in the areas of Criminal Law, Statutory Interpretation, Equity, Trusts and Contemporary Law and Justice. He has also taught undergraduate nursing students about their ethical, legal and professional responsibilities.

Prior to commencing his PhD, Roach was a solicitor at MinterEllison and LawRight.

1:50 pm — 2:10 pm

COVID Snails in Policy Bottles: Trust, Regulation and Therapeutics
Dr Bruce Baer Arnold (the University of Canberra)


COVID has tested both the global intellectual property framework and Australian consumer protection law. It offers disquieting answers about misplaced faith in the TRIPS exceptions and the willingness of governments in the North to meet the needs of people in the South. As we head to the centenary of Donoghue v Stevenson we haven’t been good neighbours. Within Australia the pandemic has highlighted weaknesses within law and administration regarding consumer protection in the public health space. The presentation explores regulatory incapacity, public trust, professional responsibility, political opportunism and incoherence in consumer protection law. It ranges from Lorna Jane antivirus leotards, the Pete Evans ‘biocharger’ and five tonnes of worm medicine through to questions about rights without responsibilities, the Beast 999 and the Australian Consumer Law.


Associate Professor Dr Bruce Baer Arnold teaches technology law at the University of Canberra, with a particular interest in the interaction of consumer protection, high technology goods/services, intellectual property and industry development. He is the author of forthcoming monographs in 2022 on the nature of legal identity, on the Animal Crossing digital platform and on identity crime. Recent publication deals with health big data, regulatory incapacity regarding complementary medicine, health sector patents and misrepresentation in marketing of health products/services. Dr Arnold is an advisor to Friends of Science in Medicine.

2:10 pm — 2:30 pm

Fraud and COVID-19

Associate Professor Cassandra Cross (QUT)


In 2020, the world was catastrophically disrupted through the COVID-19 pandemic. From March 2020, citizens globally began experiencing the effects of COVID-19, and measures such as hard lockdowns, social distancing and physical restrictions of movement were enacted. Sadly, these are still ongoing today.

Within an Australian context, offenders transitioned seamlessly from previous bushfire approaches (from summer 2020) to those framed by COVID-19. In the initial stages, phishing emails skyrocketed, and schemes sought to capitalize on the fear and anxiety of citizens, as well as harnessing government responses to the economic impacts of COVID-19 (such as stimulus payments and access to superannuation). In March 2021, with the commenced rollout of the vaccination program, approaches evolved to encompass payments for vaccines and fake registration sites for the vaccine. Most recently, with the development of vaccination certificates, there have been cases in the media of falsified and forged documents being created and sold. Statistics from the ACCC indicate that fraud losses continue to escalate, and demonstrate the impact of COVID-19 on the vulnerabilities of individuals to various fraud types.

This presentation will explore how COVID19 has impacted on fraud victimisation. It will explore the techniques used by offenders to perpetrate these offences, and how COVID19 has arguably changed the fraud profile of many in society to increase their likelihood to victimisation. It will provide some examples of approaches witnessed in Australia and overseas. Overall, it positions COVID19 not as anything new, but as an ongoing example of how offenders successfully manipulate and exploit societal vulnerabilities for financial gain.


Dr Cassandra Cross is the Associate Dean (Learning and Teaching) in the Faculty of Creative Industries, Education and Social Justice. She also holds the position of Associate Professor in the School of Justice QUT. She recently completed a two-year Senior Research Fellowship with the Cybersecurity Cooperative Research Centre exploring romance fraud victimisation. Dr Cross is an international expert on fraud, having worked with victims and related organisations globally. In 2011, while working for the Queensland Police Service, she was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to examine the prevention and support of online fraud victims worldwide. Since taking up her position at QUT in 2012, she has continued this research, publishing over 70 outputs across the policing, prevention, and victim support aspects of fraud. Further, she has been awarded over AUD$1.3million in funding, largely to drive her research in this area. She is co-author (with Professor Mark Button) of the book Cyber frauds, scams and their victims published by Routledge in 2017.

Session 5 — COVID-19, Intellectual Property, Trade Secrets, and Data Protection (3:30 pm — 5:00 pm)

3:30 pm — 3:50 pm

TRIPS and the Evil Empire: What would Darth Vader say?

Professor Charles Lawson (Griffith University)


After detailing the key elements of the proposed TRIPS waiver, the talk considers the mischief the TRIPS waiver is supposed to address, then: outlines the problems for diagnostics and therapeutics; the place of TRIPS among a range of other problems such as transport, tariffs, bottlenecks and delivery; the potential of TRIPS flexibilities; and then the politics using the lens of Darth Vader and the Empire to posit the TRIPS waiver as the exception and ask whether a return to the “normal” TRIPS is what we really want or need?


Charles Lawson is a Professor in the Griffith Law School, Griffith University. He studied science and law at The Australian National University (ANU) and holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours in biochemistry and genetics and a Bachelor of Laws. He also holds a Doctor of Philosophy from the ANU’s Research School of Biological Sciences in molecular biology and biochemistry and a Master of Laws from Queensland University of Technology for research into gene patenting and competition. Before joining the university sector, he worked as a lawyer in both the private and public sectors, including at the Australian Government Solicitor and the Commonwealth Department of Finance and Deregulation. His research focus is on biology law and public administration law.

3:50 pm — 4:10 pm

The Proposal of a Waiver of TRIPS Agreement Section 7: Protection of Undisclosed Information — In Response to Covid-19

Teddy Henriksen (University of the Sunshine Coast)


TRIPS Article 39 refers to protection against unfair competition as provided in Article 10bis of the Paris Convention (1967). Article 39.2 specifically protects undisclosed information disclosed, acquired by, or used without consent in a manner contrary to honest commercial practices such as breach of contract or breach of confidence. Article 39.3 essentially protects information provided to regulatory authorities in support of marketing applications for new pharmaceutical products.

Consideration of TRIPS Article 39 makes the wording of the text of the waiver critical in determining exactly what the proponents of the waiver wish to give timely access to: technologies involved in pharmaceutical manufacture (TRIPS Art 39.2) or clinical test results of new pharmaceuticals (TRIPS Art 39.3) related to Covid-19.

The proponents of the TRIPS waiver assert the objective of the waiver is to avoid barriers to the timely access to affordable medical products including vaccines and medicines or to scaling-up of research, development, manufacturing and supply of essential medical products.

While trade secrets are antithetical to patents in principle due to their non-disclosure, they are still important to pharmaceuticals. It has long been noted that trade secrets and patents are complementary, especially with respect to pharmaceuticals.

The nature of a trade secret is the withholding of information. Indeed, to qualify as a trade secret (confidential or undisclosed information), amongst other things, the information needs to be secret.

A waiver, then, would allow sharing of confidential information (a secret). A waiver in itself may not pose a problem with respect to trade secrets as such, what may pose a problem is trying to put the trade secret genie back in the bottle if, as is proposed, a waiver is temporary.


Teddy Henriksen is a PhD candidate with the USC Law School with degrees in law and pharmacy. His research is concerned with the interface between pharmaceutical drug development and the law, particularly legal issues around biologic drug molecules and biosimilars.

4:10 pm — 4:30 pm

A Tale of Two Coronaviruses — Data Sharing During Infectious Disease Emergencies

Dr Michelle Rourke (Griffith University)


The local, national and global response efforts to infectious disease emergencies like COVID-19 require access to the best available data. In 2018, we conducted a study on the barriers and enablers to data sharing during infectious disease emergencies using the 2012 Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak in Saudi Arabia and the 2014–2016 West African Ebola crisis as case studies (see Halabi, S., Rourke, M. and Katz, R. ‘The Effect of Proprietary and Attribution Claims on Data Sharing During Infectious Disease Emergencies’ (2021) 23(2) Journal of Health Care Law and Policy 203). Our research found that a variety of attribution and proprietary claims over various types of data (e.g., epidemiological data, clinical trial data and pathogen genetic sequence data) hindered emergency response efforts. While retrospective analyses of data sharing practices during COVID-19 will be required to get a full understanding of the specific barriers and enablers to data sharing throughout the current pandemic, it was clear from the very early days of COVID-19 that many of the same issues were responsible for obstructing response efforts. This presentation will cover some of the key data sharing barriers that existed during the MERS-CoV outbreak in 2012, including sovereign claims over virus samples, proprietary claims over viral genomes, the publishing imperative, press controls and formal data sharing initiatives, to see what, if any, lessons were learned in the lead up to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Michelle Rourke is a CSIRO Synthetic Biology Future Science Research Fellow at Griffith University’s Law Futures Centre where she researches the global regulation of access to genetic resources for the Australian synthetic biology community. Michelle was a Scientific Research Officer in the Australian Army for ten years, researching the intra-host genetic variation and evolution of dengue virus and Ross River virus. She completed her doctoral studies at Griffith Law School and as a Fulbright Scholar at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University, Washington D.C. Her thesis examined how international access and benefit-sharing (ABS) laws under the Convention on Biological Diversity, its Nagoya Protocol and the World Health Organization’s Pandemic Influenza Preparedness (PIP) Framework impact access to virus samples and associated genetic sequence data. Michelle is a member of the Global Virome Project’s Ethical, Legal and Social Implications (ELSI) Working Group, a Johns Hopkins Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative (ELBI) 2020 Fellow, and a non-resident Affiliate of the Center for Global Health Science and Security at Georgetown University Medical School.


4:30 pm — 4:50 pm

Beyond The TRIPS Waiver

Professor Natalie Stoianoff (UTS) (by video)


‘But it’s not vaccines that will stop the pandemic, it’s vaccination. We must ensure fair and equitable access to vaccines, and ensure every country receives them and can roll them out to protect their people, starting with the most vulnerable.’

WHO on COVID-19 Vaccines 2021 (

This is the point of the TRIPS Waiver, ensuring that private monopoly rights, such as patents, don’t work against the greater good of ensuring ‘…the highest attainable standard of health as a fundamental right of every human being’ (WHO Constitution (1946)). The right to health is contained in article 12(1) of the International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and this Covenant requires States Parties to take specific steps ‘to achieve the full realization of this right’, including:

(c) The prevention, treatment and control of epidemic, endemic, occupational and other diseases;

(d) The creation of conditions which would assure to all medical service and medical attention in the event of sickness (article 12(2) ICESCR).

This presentation reviews the issues surrounding the balancing of rights between the public and vaccine patent holders, considering the role of TRIPS flexibilities, the failings of WHO initiatives in addressing the balance and the potential solution beyond the TRIPS Waiver.


Natalie P. Stoianoff is a Professor and Director of the Intellectual Property Program at the Faculty of Law, University of Technology Sydney. This Program provides the complete knowledge requirements for registration as a Patent and Trade Marks Attorney under the Trans-Tasman Intellectual Property Attorneys’ Board. Natalie is also the Chair of the Indigenous Knowledge Forum Committee, a member of the UTS Commercialisation Advisory Panel and co-convenor of the Technology and Intellectual Property Research Cluster. Her international leadership both academically and professionally has resulted in her election in 2021 as President of the Asian Pacific Copyright Association and her membership of the Australian Academy of Law.

Natalie’s interdisciplinary research is concerned with new technologies including the legal, ethical and commercial aspects of biotechnology. Her research interests include patenting of living organisms, genes and pharmaceuticals, software and business methods, protecting traditional/Indigenous knowledge and culture, technology transfer, environmental taxation and climate law.

Natalie has an extensive track record in investigating the operation of intellectual property law across multiple jurisdictions and cultures. As a joint recipient of an Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Grant (2005–08), Natalie investigated intellectual property enforcement and awareness building in the People’s Republic of China. She also led an Indigenous Knowledge Forum project on Recognising and Protecting Indigenous Knowledge associated with Natural Resource Management (2013–14), funded by the Aboriginal Communities Fund of the North West Local Land Services. The White Paper produced by that project led to the award of an ARC Linkage Grant (2016–19) for the project — Garuwanga: Forming a Competent Authority to Protect Indigenous Knowledge — which explores the governance framework for an access and benefit-sharing regime.

She is the author of numerous publications, including Commercialisation of Intellectual Property (as lead author, Lexis Nexis, 2019) and Intellectual Property Law: Text and Essential Cases (as co-author, Federation Press), which has been adopted by several Australian universities and is now in its fifth edition. She is currently the managing editor of the series for the Indigenous Knowledge Forum (Lexis Nexis, first edition published 2017).

Natalie’s current research includes collaborative work on information literacies with colleagues at the University of Library Studies and Information Technology, Sofia. This project, A Conceptual Educational Model for Enhancing Information Literacy in an University Information Environment, is funded by a three year grant (2020–2022) from the Bulgarian National Science Fund.

4:50 pm — 5:10 pm

The Fall of the Innovation Empire and its Possible Rise through Open Science

Professor Richard Gold (McGill University, Canada) (by video)


There is growing concern that the innovation system’s ability to create wealth and attain social benefit is declining in effectiveness. This article explores the reasons for this decline and suggests a structure, the open science partnership, as one mechanism through which to slow down or reverse this decline. The article examines the empirical literature of the last century to document the decline. This literature suggests that the cost of research and innovation is increasing exponentially, that researcher productivity is declining, and, third, that these two phenomena have led to an overall flat or declining level of innovation productivity. The article then turns to three explanations for the decline — the growing complexity of science, a mismatch of incentives, and a balkanization of knowledge. Finally, the article explores the role that open science partnerships — public-private partnerships based on open access publications, open data and materials, and the avoidance of restrictive forms of intellectual property — can play in increasing the efficiency of the innovation system.


A James McGill Professor, Richard Gold was the founding Director and current director of the Centre for Intellectual Property Policy. He teaches in the area of intellectual property, international intellectual property, comparative intellectual property, innovation policy and intellectual property management. His research generally focuses on the life sciences.

Professor Gold has provided advice to Health Canada, Industry Canada, the Canadian Biotechnology Advisory Committee, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (where he was the lead author of the OECD Guidelines on the Licensing of Genetic Inventions and a report on Collaborative Mechanisms in Life Science Intellectual Property), the World Health Organization, the World Intellectual Property Organization and UNITAID.

His research is currently supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, Genome Canada, Genome Alberta, Genome Prairie, Genome Quebec, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Grand Challenges Canada. His previous work has been supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Genome Canada, the National Centres for Excellence and the National Institutes of Health. He is a Research Associate at the Health Law Institute at the University of Alberta and was a Jean Monnet Fellow at the European University Institute. His research has been published in high-impact journals in science, law, philosophy, international relations, including Nature Biotechnology, The Lancet, PLoS Medicine, la Revue de droit de McGill, Public Affairs Quarterly, International Studies Quarterly, the European Journal for International Relations. He has filed amicus briefs with the Supreme Court of the United States and with the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Professor Gold was Associate Dean (Graduate Studies) at the Faculty of Law from 2015 to 2019.


Australian Centre for Health Law Research, ‘The TRIPS Waiver: Intellectual Property, Access to Essential Medicines, and the Coronavirus’, 10 December 2021, (convenor) (conference archive)

Session 1 — Pandemics and Public Health Emergencies

1. Bill Bowtell, ‘Unmasked: The Politics of Pandemics’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

2. Associate Professor Wendy Bonython, ‘Themes and Motifs from a Pandemic: The Independent Panel on Pandemic Preparedness’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

3. Professor Sara Davies, ‘The Two Track Approach to Revise the International Health Regulations and the Proposed Pandemic Treaty (or Can We Have Our Cake and Eat it Too?)’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

Session 2 — COVID-19, Patent Law, and the TRIPS Waiver

4. Dr Muhammad Zaheer Abbas, ‘The Proposal of India and South Africa for a TRIPS Waiver’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

5. Professor Matthew Rimmer, ‘A TRIPS Waiver for Vaccines? President Joe Biden, Intellectual Property, Access to Essential Medicines, and the Coronavirus COVID-19’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

6. Associate Professor Felicity Deane, ‘Climate Change Technology and the WTO: Will a TRIPS Waiver Support Technology Transfer?’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

Session 3 — Comparative Debates about the TRIPS Waiver

7. Associate Professor Aisling McMahon, ‘The EU Counter-Proposal to the TRIPS Waiver: Opposition, False Promises and Delaying Real Solutions’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

8. Dr Jennifer Nguyen and Declan Sakuls (UAEM North America), ‘The TRIPS Waiver and Free the Vaccine: Universities Allied for Essential Medicines’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

9. Edward Miller, ‘The New Zealand Debate about the TRIPS Waiver’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

Session 4 COVID-19, Consumer Protection, Misinformation, and Fraud

10. Samuel Roach, ‘Vaccine Hesitancy and COVID-19 Misinformation’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

11. Associate Professor Bruce Baer Arnold, ‘COVID Snails in Policy Bottles: Trust, Regulation and Therapeutics’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

12. Associate Professor Cassandra Cross, ‘Fraud and COVID-19’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

Session 5 — COVID-19, Trade Secrets, and Data Protection

13. Professor Charles Lawson, ‘TRIPS and the Evil Empire: What would Darth Vader Say?’ The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

14. Teddy Henriksen, ‘The Proposal of a Waiver of TRIPS Agreement Section 7: Protection of Undisclosed Information — In Response to Covid-19’. The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

15. Dr Michelle Rourke, ‘A Tale of Two Coronaviruses — Data Sharing During Infectious Disease Emergencies’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,


16. Professor Natalie Stoianoff, ‘Beyond the TRIPS Waiver’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,

17. Professor Richard Gold, ‘The Fall of the Innovation Empire and its Possible Rise through Open Science’, The TRIPS Waiver, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, QUT Faculty of Business and Law, 10 December 2021,



Matthew Rimmer

Professor of Intellectual Property and Innovation Law, QUT. #Copyright #Patent #Trademark #plainpacks #Access2meds #SDGs #Climate #IndigenousIP #trade #TPP