Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Josef Korbel School of International Studies

First Advisor

Jack Donnelly, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Haider A. Khan

Third Advisor

Dale Rothman


Gender rights, Health and food security, India, Knowledge economy, Neo-medieval governance, TRIPS, Trade related intellectual property rights


Southern developing nations are increasingly emulating the knowledge economy followed by the developed nations of the North. This paradigm is characterized by the signature feature of the regime of TRIPS or individualized legal patents, particularly bio-patents developed through biotechnology in pharmaceutical and agriculture. It is also characterized by corporate social responsibility as a market mode of governance of development and increasing state retrenchment from delivery of public welfare. This form of economy is embedded in multilayered governance of neo-medieval governance where states and corporations tussle for the right to define growth and equity. This thesis argues that such a mode of economy and governance has failed to deliver equity for the marginalized poor women in India. This is explicated through four critical factors. First, there is increasing biopiracy of tribal women's traditional knowledge and denuding of uncodified knowledge of tribal women due to land deprivation which in turn severely affects their health. Second, a thriving pharmaceutical sector has failed to deliver health equity for poor women, particularly by being engaged in creation of medicines that do not have relevance for the main disease profile of the poor - communicable diseases. Third, there is rise of non-communicable diseases of the poor. Patents act as legal barriers to access to medicine and severely impact the health of the poor. Fourth, the rise of Bt seeds in cash crop agriculture has meant that traditionally saved and used food crop seeds are being marginalized and there is a growing agrarian crisis for women who do not have control over land, seeds and seed technology. Fifth, poverty is on the rise which is a sure sign that equity has not trickled down. If the international society of states provides for customized patents for women's traditional knowledge, women's knowledge, health and food security would be better secured.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Kausiki Mukhopadhyay


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

344 p.


Intellectual property, Health care management, Gender studies