USING COPYRIGHT LAW TO ENHANCE EDUCATION FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT: AN ANALYSIS OF INTERNATIONAL AND NATIONAL EDUCATIONAL EXCEPTIONS, WITH SPECIFIC REFERENCE TO UGANDA
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Strict enforcement of copyright in least developed countries like Uganda would negatively affect realisation of the right to education which is both intrinsic and instrumental to realisation of economic development goals including the Millennium Development Goals. The right to education is recognised internationally, regionally and by the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda 1995. Universal access to copyrighted educational materials is needed if education in less developed countries is to serve its purposes. However, to stimulate creation of materials for the future, copyright restricts both access and use of copyrighted materials which negatively affects realisation of the right to education in less developed countries. Unfortunately, exceptions as copyright’s tool for enabling access and use are unclear and narrowly construed. For TRIPS compliance, Uganda enacted the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act, 2006 without optimally transposing exceptions. Moreover, under the current international framework, even the most maximalist approach to exceptions would not serve less developed country needs. Accordingly, the Berne Appendix for developing countries, though procedurally complex, should be used. This thesis undertakes a critical comparative analysis of relevant international and national copyright provisions. While referencing legislation from selected countries, Uganda’s commendable fair use provisions are nevertheless not optimal for supporting education for economic development. Various doctrinal issues arise from the exceptions and Uganda’s Berne Union ‘absentee’ status. Pending international reforms, maximally transposing and utilising available exceptions is imperative. Key recommendations include: incorporating the human right to education among fair use factors and joining the Berne Union. Classical utilitarianism is used to justify maximising exceptions within the current international copyright framework to promote quality education. Arguably, maximally transposing and using exceptions to support education is the way to facilitate economic development as the ‘greatest good’ for the world’s greatest number living in poverty in less developed countries in an era of globalisation.
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