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Fundamental principles

The ITER Project is an international scientific and technological project where intellectual property will be used and created by different legal entities during the construction of the facilities and their operation. Therefore, when the ITER Organization was established by the ITER Agreement to construct, operate, and exploit the ITER facilities, principles concerning intellectual property were incorporated in Article 10 of the ITER Agreement and detailed in its Annex on Information and Intellectual Property.

These fundamental principles are the following:

• In the frame of the ITER Project, each Member shall provide its contributions to the ITER Organization in kind, through an appropriate legal entity: the Domestic Agency;

• The ITER Organization and the ITER Members, acting through a Domestic Agency or entity, shall support the widest appropriate dissemination of information and intellectual property they generate in the execution of the ITER Agreement;

• In carrying out its activities, the ITER Organization shall ensure that any scientific results shall be published or otherwise made widely available after a reasonable period of time to allow for the obtaining of appropriate protection (copyright on works based on those results is the property of the ITER Organization);

• When placing contracts for work to be performed pursuant to the ITER Agreement, the ITER Organization and the ITER Members shall include provisions in such contracts on any resulting  intellectual property which shall:
o address inter alia rights of access to, as well as disclosure and use of, such intellectual property; and
o be consistent with the ITER Agreement and the IIP Annex.
• Intellectual Property generated or incorporated pursuant to the ITER Agreement shall be treated in accordance with the provisions of the Annex on Information and Intellectual Property.

As a result, the ITER Organization and the ITER Members are required, under certain conditions, to share Background and Generated IP by way of license agreements or commercial arrangements, the provisions of which are more or less stringent depending on the use envisaged for the purpose of publicly-sponsored fusion R&D programs, of commercial fusion or uses other than for fusion.

Link to the ITER Agreement and its Annex on Information and Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property Management

The management of intellectual property at the ITER Organization is supervised by an Intellectual Property Board. It assesses all aspects of intellectual property protection and monitors the operation of the ITER Organization's intellectual property database.

A Publication Board has been established to oversee the implementation of the publication procedure.

Intellectual Property and Contractors

The principles of the Annex on Information and Intellectual Property are incorporated in the ITER Organization's contractual conditions. According to these, the contractors will provide a Background Declaration during the contracting process.

Background Declaration, General Conditions

Further information

For intellectual property issues please send an email to: ip@iter.org