Intellectual property piracy in a North-South context: Empirical evidence

Peter Goldsmith, Gabriel Ramos, Carlos Steiger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The protection of intellectual property rights (IPR) has been a contentious issue for more than 20 years. Industrialized nations have moved to knowledge-based economies, and simultaneously, trade barriers have fallen, making intellectual property (IP) vulnerable. Adding to this vulnerability are conflicting international institutional environments, belief systems, and economic realities. The debate over IPR protection has become a significant global trade issue pitting the net-technology producing "North" against the net-technology consuming "South." With this in mind, there has been much debate about the impact of alternative IPR regimes (tight or loose) on the welfare of Southern economies. Policy makers, in both the South and the North, search for arguments to convince recalcitrant Southern countries to follow the Northern model of strict IPR regimes. The South, faced with a dilemma, searches for arguments to justify looser regimes or convince its populace that tighter regimes are in the best interest of the nation. The objective of this research is to add empirical clarity about the welfare impacts of weak IPR on the firm and host country. To this end, we employ a novel methodological design and unique context. The research design is deductive, in that we use the empirical setting of Pioneer-Argentina, S.A., a seller of bioengineered agricultural seeds, to test the existing theory of weak IPR impacts in a North-South context.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-349
Number of pages15
JournalAgricultural Economics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2006


  • Agricultural seeds
  • Argentina
  • Intellectual property rights
  • International development
  • Soybeans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Economics and Econometrics


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