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Digital transformation, data and frontier technologies


Frontier Technologies

The last two decades have seen an explosion of technologies, transforming how we work and live in an increasingly interconnected digital world. The emergence of frontier technologies is at the heart of what is sometimes known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0.

The field of frontier technologies is rapidly evolving and there is no agreed definition. However, frontier technologies all share some common features. They operate at the intersection of radical scientific developments and real-world implementation. They are changing the way we communicate, solve problems, provide goods and services, create and do business. And the rate of change is increasing exponentially.

Frontier technologies also provide opportunities for economic growth. In order to harness those opportunities for all, we need to ensure that the IP ecosystem continues to foster innovation and creation and that the systems for IP administration evolve with the changes.


According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), nearly a quarter (24.3%) of global GDP will come from digital technologies by 2025. It is estimated that 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created daily. This rate of creation is accelerating exponentially, with 90 percent of existing data having been generated in the last two years. Data generation and refinement can represent a significant investment. Data wrangling, the process of cleaning and curating data into usable data sets, is fast becoming a key to using all the data we are generating.

Data generation, collection and curation, on the one hand, and data access, on the other hand, are pivotal to driving the new frontier technologies.

The WIPO Conversation

The WIPO IP and Frontier Technologies Division aims to facilitate discussion and knowledge building among Member States and other stakeholders on the impact of frontier technologies on IP, to support well-informed policy decisions and to provide practical tools and guidance to help us all navigate the IP questions posed by the new digital world.

The WIPO Conversation provides an open, inclusive forum to engage with and facilitate discussion and knowledge building among the broadest possible set of stakeholders on the impact on IP of frontier technologies.

The fourth session of the Conversation will take place on September 22-23, 2021, and will focus on “Data – beyond AI in a fully interconnected world”. We will ask how data changes how we do business, innovate and create. And we will explore how data fits into the current IP system and how can the IP system use data.

Request for Information

To assist us in shaping our future work in frontier technologies and IP, and in preparation for the fourth session of the WIPO Conversation, we would like to hear from you about the challenges and opportunities you see, your stories and your views.

The questionnaire starts with some general questions relating to your use of frontier technologies and IP. Then it focuses on data as a driving force fueling frontier technologies, including AI.

WIPO is seeking to support innovators and creators with practical tools and guidance in this new world of frontier technologies. We will use your answers to this questionnaire to help us help you.

Any personal information provided, such as contact details of individual persons, will not be made publically available but may be used solely by WIPO to share the results of the questionnaire and to gather further information in the future.

We would be very grateful if you could provide us with your answers in English for ease of analysis.

Thank you so much in advance for your replies.