African Copyright and Access to Knowledge Network (ACA2K)

The debate over intellectual property policies and their effects is highly contested. Finding the right balance between protecting the interests of producers and ensuring access to knowledge-based products (particularly learning materials) is of particular concern to developing countries. Africa is a net importer of intellectual property covered by copyright rules. The African Comparative Copyright Review (ACCR) believes that a stringent copyright climate could limit access to knowledge goods and thereby hinder the emergence of local innovation and learning.

This project will allow the ACCR to bring together a research team from five African countries (Egypt, Ghana, Sénégal, South Africa, Uganda). The team will examine the existing legal framework in each country and determine whether any limitations or exceptions allowed by international copyright treaties could be incorporated within national legislation to improve access to copyrighted materials. They will also provide policymakers and advocates with evidence in support of a copyright environment that fosters access to knowledge for use in international negotiations.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Monday, October 1, 2007

End Date

Friday, September 30, 2011


28 months

IDRC Officer

Fourati, Khaled

Total funding

CA$ 1,660,500


Egypt, Ghana, Senegal, Uganda, South Africa, North of Sahara, South of Sahara

Project Leader

Chris Armstrong


University of the Witwatersrand

Institution Country

South Africa

Institution Website