With offices in Geneva, Switzerland and, since 2010, in Singapore, the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (WIPO Center) is a neutral, international and non-profit dispute resolution provider that offers alternative dispute resolution procedures (ADR), such as mediation and arbitration, to enable private parties to efficiently settle their domestic or cross-border intellectual property and technology disputes out of court.
In July 2009, WIPO and the Government of Singapore signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) which established the WIPO Center’s Office in Singapore to promote ADR services in the Asia-Pacific region.
In addition to offering procedural dispute resolution guidance in choosing or adjusting dispute resolution clauses and administering procedures under the WIPO Rules, the WIPO Center's Office in Singapore organizes sessions and training on ADR of intellectual property and technology related disputes. It also facilitates hearings in cases conducted in Singapore under the WIPO Rules.
Collaboration with Stakeholders and Entities
The WIPO Center collaborates with stakeholders and organizations based in Singapore and in the region in different areas related to intellectual property disputes. This includes organization of joint events and training, and establishment of adapted ADR frameworks, and involves for example the following:
- Intellectual Property Offices - In September 2011, an MoU established a framework for collaboration between the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) and WIPO. Under this MoU, IPOS and the WIPO Center have developed specific procedures to facilitate the resolution of disputes pending before IPOS.
- Film and Media - As part of an ongoing collaboration with the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA), WIPO developed in cooperation with industry experts the WIPO Mediation and Expedited Arbitration Rules for Film and Media. These Rules are particularly appropriate for international film and media transactions where parties require an expedited dispute resolution process.
- Information and Communication Technology - Over a third of the cases administered by the WIPO Center are in the area of information and communication technology (ICT). The WIPO Center collaborates, among others, with the Singapore infocomm Technology Federation (SiTF) to raise awareness of ADR options to ICT vendors, their partners and customers.
- Franchising and Licensing - The Franchising and Licensing Association of Singapore (FLA) and the WIPO Center have established a collaboration to promote the use of ADR options to court litigation to facilitate the settlement of disputes related to franchising and licensing transactions.