Skip to content Skip to navigation

Intellectual Property Exhaustion and Parallel Imports: Critical and Comparative Perspectives

By Irene Calboli

The principle of exhaustion of intellectual property rights has been developed by courts and legislatures to balance exclusive intellectual property rights both in primary and secondary markets. This long-standing principle, however, is constantly challenged by the rules of international trade, and more recently by the rise of e-commerce and the Internet and its application to new technologies, such as digital or self-replicating technologies. Despite the importance of this principle, academic research in this area is still scarce and scattered.  This research project aims at engaging in a comprehensive analysis of the exhaustion doctrine and its application in the context of international trade, from an historical, economic, and comparative perspectives.

In this respect, this project hopes to become a comprehensive guide for scholars, policy makers, and stakeholders when engaging in the debate in this area. In particular, this project provides a survey of the principle of exhaustion and its application to parallel imports across the fields of copyright, patent, and trademark laws in different jurisdictions. It also addresses the topic with respect to international trade and parallel imports, in general as well as focusing on different industries, particularly pharmaceutical products, self-replicating technologies, and digital technologies.

The outcome of this project is a book titled “Research Handbook on Intellectual Property Exhaustion and Parallel Imports” edited by Professor Irene Calboli and Professor Edward Lee (Illinois Institute of Technology-Chicago Kent College of Law), which has been published by Edward Elgar Publishing in 2016.

Last updated on 20 Sep 2016 .