Intellectual property

Lightbulb. Idea. Intellectual property

Intellectual property

Intellectual property is any creation of the human intellect and is regulated in Royal Legislative Decree 1/1996, of 12 April 1996, approving the revised text of the Intellectual Property Act. It concerns creations of the mind: the inventions, literary and artistic works.

Unlike in other countries, Spain's Intellectual Property Law does not cover industrial property, which provides specific protection for the inventions, symbols, names, images, designs and models used in the market, or authors' rights. In relation to the University, just as in professional activities, the main aim of intellectual property is to acknowledge the authorship of the person or people who have created a particular work

In the field of academia, there are many different ways of using other people's works, but these people must always be acknowledged as their authors. This principle, which is known as academic honesty, is often associated with avoiding what is known as academic plagiarism: passing off another person's work as your own. 

Authors have a variety of rights known as authors' rights but, in practice, intellectual property and authors' rights are treated as synonyms in Spain.