skip to primary navigationskip to content

'Patents on Life' book to be published soon with CUP

last modified Apr 01, 2019 02:09 PM

Cambridge University Press has announced the publication of Patents on Life: Religious, Moral, and Social Justice Aspects of Biotechnology and Intellectual Property, edited by Thomas C. Berg, Roman Cholij, and Simon Ravenscroft.

The volume includes several chapters that are developments of papers first delivered at the VHI 2015 'Patents on Life' conference, and brings a unique collection of legal, religious, ethical, and political perspectives to bear on debates concerning biotechnology patents, or 'patents on life'.

The ever-increasing importance of biotechnologies has generated continual questions about how intellectual property law should treat such technologies, especially those raising ethical or social-justice concerns. Even after many years and court decisions, important contested issues remain concerning ownership of and rewards from biotechnology – from human genetic material to genetically engineered plants – and regarding the scope of moral or social-justice limitations on patents or licensing practices. This book explores a range of related issues, including questions concerning morality and patentability, biotechnology and human dignity, and what constitute fair rewards from genetic resources. It features high-level international, interfaith, and cross-disciplinary contributions from experts in law, religion, and ethics, including academics and practitioners, placing religious and secular perspectives into dialogue to examine the full implications of patenting life.

Publication is expected for October 2019.


An interdisciplinary research hub inspired by Catholic thought and culture, focussed on contemporary global realities, and dedicated to encounter, dialogue, and transformation

Keep up with our news