World Intellectual Property Organization

IP and Traditional Handicrafts

In many countries and for many indigenous and local communities, the handicraft sector plays a vital social and cultural function and contributes significantly to communal, local and national economies.

The design, reputation, goodwill and “style” associated with handicrafts are, however, vulnerable to imitation and misappropriation.

IP tools (such as certification and collective trademarks; geographical indications; copyright; unfair competition) may be used by artisans and handicrafts organizations to promote their interests.

At the same time, new forms of IP protection for traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions are being developed.

Marketing Crafts & Visual Arts

The Role of IP

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