Justine Pila


The patent regimes of several countries face an interplay of different obligations today which has made it difficult to discern the methodology adopted in answering questions of patentability. Consider India, where the regime witnesses the tussle between obligations under domestic legislation and Fundamental Rights, and those imposed by the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights. Harmonization of these competing obligations raises important questions of an appropriate methodology, the absence of which would reduce the intricate complexities into an apparent jumble. In this article, the author takes up this issue in the European context, specifically positing her arguments against the backdrop of the debate surrounding the exclusion of natural phenomenon from patentability in Europe. It is argued that the European setting witnesses a lack of an appropriate methodology to determine the limits of patent law, which has rendered the inevitable convergence around some basic principles rather unsatisfactory and incoherent.