The WIPO SMEs Newsletter of January 2012 (which doesnt yet seem to appear on the WIPO website) brings news that WIPO will be working with the government of Egypt to establish an IP Institute. The newsletter reads:
“WIPO will support Egypt in establishing an institute that is dedicated to the teaching of intellectual property (IP). A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed on October 26, 2011, by Ambassador Hisham Badr, Permanent Representative of Egypt to the United Nations office in Geneva, and WIPO Director General Francis Gurry that outlines the areas of collaboration. The MoU was signed in the presence of Ambassador Ahmed Fatah Allah, First Undersecretary of the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”
This part of the Empty Quarter welcomes any initiative to share knowledge and increase learning. Egypt has been a centre of learning for many hundreds of years, has a large population from which to find bright, young minds interested in IP and a diverse open society. Learned Egyptian minds have, for many years, travelled across the region and perhaps this new institute will create a new generation to carry on that tradition. There are few institutions across the region with a specialist focus on IP and perhaps this initiative will encourage the creation of more.