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Information Environmentalism

A Governance Framework for Intellectual Property Rights Robert Cunningham, Curtin Law School, Curtin University, Australia
Information Environmentalism applies four environmental analytical frameworks – ecology, ‘the commons’, public choice theory, and welfare economics – to the information environment. The book neatly captures the metaphorical relationship between the physical environment and the information environment by alluding to the environmental philosophy of ‘social ecology’ and the emergent informational discourse of ‘cultural environmentalism’.
Extent: 320 pp
Hardback Price: £85.00 Web: £76.50
Publication Date: 2014
ISBN: 978 0 85793 843 5
Availability: In Stock
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  • Economics and Finance
  • Law and Economics
  • Law - Academic
  • Intellectual Property Law
  • Law and Economics
In the 21st century the information commons provides critical raw material for creativity and innovation. This book explores ways and means of protecting the ‘information environment’ by drawing upon four theories of contemporary environmentalism: welfare economics, the commons, ecology and public choice theory.

Information Environmentalism applies four environmental analytical frameworks to the information commons. The book neatly captures the metaphorical relationship between the physical environment and the information environment by alluding to the environmental philosophy of ‘social ecology’ and the emergent informational discourse of ‘cultural environmentalism’. Robert Cunningham builds upon the proposition that the success of the environmental movement can be traced directly to these four analytical frameworks. He develops, refines and integrates the theoretical foundations of ‘cultural environmentalism’ and applies them to the digital age, in which the regulation of information will have a critical impact upon the manner in which human beings conduct their lives, and the manner in which society functions more generally.

Offering an original contribution in its literal application of contemporary theories of environmentalism to intellectual property rights, this book will be a thought-provoking read for scholars and students with an interest in IP or the regulation of information.
‘This thoughtful and deeply analytical text examines in detail what the author, Robert Cunningham, describes as ‘the nexus between the physical environment and the information environment’ and explores the ways in which ‘environmental analytical frameworks’ might also apply to the information environment. . . IP theorists in particular, as well as environmental lawyers and academics will appreciate the insights revealed and the often new and original avenues of thought which Cunningham opens up to scrutiny as a result of his careful research. Certainly this book deserves a place in the well read practitioner’s professional library.’
– Phillip Taylor MBE and Elizabeth Taylor, The Barrister Magazine

‘Professor Cunningham’s first title is an articulate analogy between the physical and informational environments, which provides a thorough application of ecological and environmentalist discourse to the information environment.’
– Catherine Pocock, Queen Mary Journal of Intellectual Property

Contents: 1. Information Environmentalism 2. Information Paradox and Public Goods 3. Externalities and Monopolies 4. Information Commons 5. Tragedy of (Ignoring) the Information Semicommons 6. The Social Ecology of Information Environmental Governance 7. Should the Information Commons have Standing? 8. Rational Truths, Reasonable Arguments and Rhetorical Imagination 9. Public Choice Theory and Social Production 10. Constitutional Economics and the Separation of (Economic) Power 11. Control, Alt, Delete: Towards an Information Environmental Governance Framework Index