Comparative policy review for access and exchange
of genetic resources
among Pacific Rim countries
PI: Santiago Carrizosa, GRCP
Co-PIs: Steven B. Brush, Dept. of Human & Community
Development, UC Davis and Brian J. Wright, Dept. of Agricultural
& Resource Economics, UC Berkeley
Many Pacific Rim countries share ecological similarities in
large terrestrial and marine regions but they also share the
need to regulate access to their rich genetic resources. There
is already great experience in the region that can be shared
not only among the Pacific Rim countries, but also between these
countries and other non-Pacific Rim countries that may also be
facing access concerns. The goal of the project was to promote
a participatory process to strengthen the capacity of Pacific
Rim countries to generate sound access frameworks that facilitate
both research activities and the exchange of genetic resources
among these countries.
Specific objective. To identify existing access frameworks,
benefit-sharing strategies, IPR issues, and bioprospecting initiatives
in the Pacific Rim region and develop a comparative analysis.
1) Develop and conduct a survey of Pacific Rim countries to
- Status of development and implementation of access laws and
- Status of IPRs
- Presence of bioprospecting initiatives and whether these
initiatives have designed novel and effective benefit-sharing
2) Develop detailed review and concept papers from selected
countries that have developed and adopted access laws and policies
(Group A) and selected countries that are currently developing
access laws (Group B). The concept papers from both groups of
countries will address:
- the process that led to or will lead to the development of
national biodiversity access laws and policies.
- the main difficulties and successes that countries have experienced
during the design of access laws and policies.
- the difficulties and successes in implementation of access
laws and policies.
- the influence of these laws/policies and IPR issues on bioprospecting
- any novel benefit-sharing strategies that have been implemented
In addition, concept papers from the Group B countries will
review the performance of bioprospecting initiatives in their
countries that lack access laws and policies.
3) Prepare a comparative analysis
Based on the survey and concept papers, the project PIs developed
a comparative analysis and a set of guidelines for countries
that are currently developing access legislation or that are
negotiating with bioprospecting groups. The comparative analysis
addressed not only the variation in obstacles for the design
of access laws, but also the solutions for the design of balanced
4) Develop a comprehensive report
The comparative analysis, the guidelines, the survey results
and the concept papers were organized into a report that has
been published in hard copy from IUCN and is available in electronic form from the Genetic Resources
Conservation Program website.
The main outcomes of this phase of the project will include:
Increased awareness among Pacific Rim experts and policy-makers
about alternatives for access and bioprospecting issues.
A network of experts and decision-makers on access and bioprospecting
issues in the Pacific Rim.
A comparative analysis of access laws and policies and a
set of access guidelines.
A comprehensive report that combines the survey results from
all the Pacific Rim countries, the concept papers from the eight
target countries, the comparative analysis of existing access
laws and policies, and the guidelines for future action.
Survey: Respondents were identified for 40 Pacific
Rim countries, the survey questionnaire was developed and distributed,
responses were received and analyzed, analyses were drafted and
Concept papers: Group A countries are Colombia, Costa
Rica, Mexico, the Philippines, and the USA and Group B countries
are Australia, Chile, and Malaysia. Experts from each were identified
and concept papers were solicited, received, edited, and revised.
The completed report was published by IUCN (World Conservation
Union) and launched at the Third IUCN World Conservation Congress,
1725 November 2004, in Bangkok Thailand:
S. Carrizosa, S.B. Brush, B.D. Wright, and P.E.
McGuire. 2004. Accessing Biodiversity and Sharing the Benefits:
Lessons from Implementing the Convention on Biological Diversity.
IUCN, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK. xiv+316 pp. ISBN
This page last updated March 10, 2005.
Copyright UC Regents. All rights reserved.