I just had the incredible opportunity of being in a panel at The International Economic Forum of the Americas conference with Luc Montagnier and James Heckman. The panel was on innovation and economic development and the debate centered around patents and whether patents promote economic development or not.

Although the panel went on for around 2 hours the summary of it is that Luc Montaigner, the co discoverer of the AIDS virus, was for patents and James Heckman, the Nobel prize in Economics, against. While Luc Montaigner made a good case as to why patents are needed in the field of medicine, James Heckman made the best case I had ever heard as to why patents mostly hurt development. When it was my turn I sided with Heckman, elaborating on the open source movement and how I oppose all technology related patents outside of medicine.

Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars

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Cantani, Arnaldo on February 1, 2009  · 

Cantani, Arnaldo on February 1, 2009  · 

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