AJIC Issue 16, 2015

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Innovation in technology, in production of goods and services, in business processes, in formal and informal economic settings, in electronic media and audio-visual content, in music – all these and other fields of innovation sit on foundations of knowledge, either private or common, appropriated via various mechanisms, including intellectual property (IP) tools. For almost two decades, the movement for access to knowledge (A2K) has slowly emerged, seeking open approaches to appropriation and IP and giving rise to a range of new phenomena for investigation. In the age of the Internet, knowledge can flow easily across borders, across industries and economic sectors, and across and among economic and social interest groups. The availability of rich sources of knowledge for productive innovation can enrich the African continent – it is possible. However, policy, law and regulation have not kept pace with the rapid changes in the availability of knowledge. Outdated policy, law and regulation, or practice, may limit the potential for knowledge resources to have full economic or social impact. These and other research problems are explored in the articles and thematic reports in this thematic issue.