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What is IP

What is IP? 
In general terms, intellectual property may refer to the discovery, creation, invention, design, trade mark, know-how or any research effort and all rights pertaining thereto whether registrable or not. It is of paramount importance to safeguard IP so as to sustain a robust growth of innovation and creation for betterment of the society. The recognition of IP by the community at large, not confined to the academia, is indispensable to innovation creation and knowledge transfer.


IPR Protection Areas Need to Apply or Register? Maximum Duration
Inventions, ideas Yes 20 years
(Utility Model)
Minor improvements of existing products or inventions Yes  6-10 years 
Copyright literary and artistic works range from books, music, paintings, sculpture, and films, to computer programs, databases, and technical drawings No  70 years after death of author 
Design /
design patent
ornamental aspect (appearance) of an article
Yes At least 10 years
Registered trade mark Name, logo, etc.  Yes Unlimited
Trade Secrets Unpublished secret or confidential information No Unlimited

Types of IP

Patent (Invention)
A patent is a set of exclusive rights granted by a state or national government to make, use, and sell the patented invention for a limited period of time, generally 20 years.  

Patent (Utility Model)
A utility model provides protection of so-called “minor inventions” through a system similar to the patent system. While the minor improvements of existing products may not necessary fulfill the typical patentability requirements, it may have an important role in an innovation system.

A trademark is a sign that distinguishes the goods and services of one trader from those of others. Typically a trademark can be words (including personal names), indications, designs, letters, characters, numerals, figurative elements, colours, sounds, smells, the shape of the goods or their packaging or any combination of these. A sign must be capable of being represented graphically in order for it to be registered as a trademark. (Source: IPD)

Registered Design
Designs can be registered for a wide range of products. Registered owners claim the right to prevent others from manufacturing, importing, using, selling or hiring the designs which predominantly cover the appearance of a product. The valid period of protection lasts from 5 to 25 years upon successful registration. Owners can renew the protection when the current registration expires. (Source: IPD)

Copyright is an automatic right given to the owner of an original work. It arises when a work is created spanning from books, software, music, plays, sculptures, recordings, films and so on. (Source: IPD)

Trade Secret (Undisclosed Commercial Information)
Trade secrets and undisclosed commercial information are confidential information in a commercial setting, such as formulas, methods, technologies, designs, product specifications, business plans and client lists, that have commercial value. (Source: IPD)

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