This Essay argues that human development should be adopted as a metric for IP because it is a useful and relevant metric, and one that can be invoked under both the natural rights and utilitarian frameworks. Metric, as used here, refers to a method for measuring the effects of IP laws.
Part I of this Essay will provide a brief overview of some of the reasons for the dissatisfaction with current IP law before making the connection between IP and human development in Part II. Part III explains how human development can be adapted as a metric for IP under both utilitarian and natural rights frameworks, while Part IV offers some examples of how a human development metric could apply to IP law. This project does not purport to comprehensively answer the question of how best to integrate human development as a metric into IP law. However, it will offer some preliminary suggestions about how this metric could apply to some traditional frameworks for IP in light of the core goals of the global regime and the explicit objectives of the TRIPS Agreement.