About Intellectual Property IP Training IP Outreach IP for… IP and... IP in... Patent & Technology Information Trademark Information Industrial Design Information Geographical Indication Information Plant Variety Information (UPOV) IP Laws, Treaties & Judgements IP Resources IP Reports Patent Protection Trademark Protection Industrial Design Protection Geographical Indication Protection Plant Variety Protection (UPOV) IP Dispute Resolution IP Office Business Solutions Paying for IP Services Negotiation & Decision-Making Development Cooperation Innovation Support Public-Private Partnerships The Organization Working with WIPO Accountability Patents Trademarks Industrial Designs Geographical Indications Copyright Trade Secrets WIPO Academy Workshops & Seminars World IP Day WIPO Magazine Raising Awareness Case Studies & Success Stories IP News WIPO Awards Business Universities Indigenous Peoples Judiciaries Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Traditional Cultural Expressions Economics Gender Equality Global Health Climate Change Competition Policy Sustainable Development Goals Enforcement Frontier Technologies Mobile Applications Sports Tourism PATENTSCOPE Patent Analytics International Patent Classification ARDI – Research for Innovation ASPI – Specialized Patent Information Global Brand Database Madrid Monitor Article 6ter Express Database Nice Classification Vienna Classification Global Design Database International Designs Bulletin Hague Express Database Locarno Classification Lisbon Express Database Global Brand Database for GIs PLUTO Plant Variety Database GENIE Database WIPO-Administered Treaties WIPO Lex - IP Laws, Treaties & Judgments WIPO Standards IP Statistics WIPO Pearl (Terminology) WIPO Publications Country IP Profiles WIPO Knowledge Center WIPO Technology Trends Global Innovation Index World Intellectual Property Report PCT – The International Patent System ePCT Budapest – The International Microorganism Deposit System Madrid – The International Trademark System eMadrid eMadrid Reference Article 6ter (armorial bearings, flags, state emblems) Hague – The International Design System eHague Lisbon – The International System of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications eLisbon UPOV PRISMA Mediation Arbitration Expert Determination Domain Name Disputes Centralized Access to Search and Examination (CASE) Digital Access Service (DAS) WIPO Pay Current Account at WIPO WIPO Assemblies Standing Committees Calendar of Meetings WIPO Official Documents Development Agenda Technical Assistance IP Training Institutions COVID-19 Support National IP Strategies Policy & Legislative Advice Cooperation Hub Technology and Innovation Support Centers (TISC) Technology Transfer Inventor Assistance Program WIPO GREEN WIPO's Pat-INFORMED Accessible Books Consortium WIPO for Creators WIPO ALERT Member States Observers Director General Activities by Unit External Offices Job Vacancies Procurement Results & Budget Financial Reporting Oversight

Protection of Non-Original Databases

Member states of WIPO have been discussing the possible introduction of international protection of non-original databases which presently do not qualify for protection under copyright law.

The originality requirement that a database must constitute an intellectual creation by reason of the selection or arrangement of its contents in order to enjoy copyright protection means that some databases are not protected under copyright even if substantial investments have been made to produce them. It has been discussed whether such investments should also be protected, for example, by a sui generis right. Another possibility is to use an approach based on protection against misappropriation or unfair competition.

The WIPO Diplomatic Conference on Certain Copyright and Neighboring Rights Questions held in December 1996, which adopted the WIPO Internet Treaties, had among its documents a Basic Proposal for the Substantive Provisions of the Treaty on Intellectual Property in Respect of Databases to be considered by the Diplomatic Conference. Although agreement was not reached, the Conference adopted a Recommendation Concerning Databases.

In 2002, at the request of the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR), the WIPO Secretariat commissioned six studies on the economic impact of international database protection on developing countries and countries in transition, and prepared a summary on existing legislation concerning intellectual property (IP) in non-original databases. These studies were discussed by the SCCR.

As far as developments at the regional and national levels are concerned, the European Community adopted, in 1996, the Directive 96/9/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 1996 on the legal protection of databases, which contains provisions on sui generis protection of databases. The Directive has been implemented in countries of the European Union and by a number of countries linked to the Union through trade agreements. A few other countries also provide for protection of unoriginal databases in their national laws.

In June 2003, in view of the limited developments that had taken place on the subject, the SCCR decided to take the matter up only at its meeting in the sessions of June 2004 and November 2005, and thereafter only in case of request of interested delegations.



Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights

  • All sessions of the SCCR - protection of non-original databases was discussed on 1st to 9th sessions except the 4th and on 11th and 13th sessions of the SCCR

Diplomatic conference (1996)

Other meetings