Clusters and Links in ‏Asian Intellectual Property Law and Policy

Document Type

Book Section

Publication Date





Intellectual property developments in Asia are dynamic, distinct and diverse. There are also significant complexities both within the region and within each individual country. To advance research and understanding in this area, this chapter underscores the insights provided by two pairs of analytical concepts.

The first pair covers divergences and convergences. It aims to shed light on the similarities and differences in intellectual property regimes in Asia. It also explains why intellectual property laws have developed as they have.

The second pair concerns clusters and links. Instead of asking why similarities and differences exist, countries are clustered together to provide a more systematic and meaningful comparison. Through a discussion of links, this chapter also reminds us that clusters do not stand alone; rather, they interact with each other and with intellectual property regimes outside Asia.

Taken together, these two pairs of analytical concepts serve an additional goal. They reflect the duality — or the yin and yang — inherent in Asian societies, as well as the highly uneven development both within Asia and inside each Asian country. Although observers have been understandably uncomfortable with this duality, there is no easy way to discuss intellectual property developments in Asia without also mentioning their complexities.

First Page


Last Page





Christoph Antons

Book Title

Routledge Handbook on Asian Law