Traditional Knowledge and Plant Genetic Resources Guidelines
Southern Africa Network for Biosciences, NEPAD, August 2012

These guidelines were developed as a result of growing concern of a lack of policies and laws in several countries of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) to govern the use of traditional knowledge, biological resources and benefit-sharing. They include suggestions for actions related to policies, legislation at national and regional level and further action to be taken by institutions, both public and private. The actions suggested for implementation by national governments and regional bodies focus on harmonization and coordination, which includes domestication of appropriate international agreements, setting minimum standards, updating existing policies and legislation, fostering bilateral and multilateral agreements, developing cross-border biodiversity management plans, establishing monitoring and management structures, streamlining duties of established offices and setting up coordinated flow and exchange of information. The guidelines also suggest actions to support links and collaboration. They address: traditional knowledge, including identification and documentation procedures; access and benefit-sharing; farmers’ rights; intellectual property rights; stakeholders, including among others community institutions; and cross-cutting issues, including capacity building, advocacy and awareness, and evaluation, monitoring and reporting. Download the guidelines [pdf] …