Provided staff training on use of the Internet/Intranet, and many new Intranet home pages have been created to improve information to staff. However, more resources and training would be needed to keep up with the volume of information to be uploaded.
The result of the above activities was an exponential expansion of the quantity and variety of information on WIPO and its activities which was rapidly, sometimes instantaneously, available to millions of Internet users. The consequential transparency of the Organization received many favorable comments.
Media Relations and Public Affairs
Improved outreach to the international media, notably to major press representatives in Geneva using OGCPD’s information plan. Preparatory steps were taken to later expand the outreach in the second half of 1998 to include the national media of Member States.
Issued some 24 press releases or updates (compared with 13 throughout 1997), on all aspects of WIPO’s activities.
Increased availability of the Director General and senior staff members of the Secretariat to the press who provided over 50 interviews in Geneva, and overseas.
Attended the twice-weekly press briefings organized by the United Nations in Geneva. Almost 300 press kits of current information on WIPO activities were distributed during the period. WIPO was mentioned in major international general interest and economic publications, such as the Economist, Financial Times, International Herald Tribune, Los Angeles Times, and, New York Times, as well as in many newspapers in Switzerland and developing countries.
Began a news-clipping service of press reports on WIPO or intellectual property issues of special interest to staff members. Preparations were made to later offer the service to Permanent Missions in Geneva and the intellectual property offices of Member States.
Received and answered some 2600 written and verbal information inquiries. Around 45 visiting groups of government officials, WIPO trainees and representatives of nongovernmental organizations were briefed on WIPO.
Finalized plans and preparatory steps for the establishment of a Visitors’ Center and exhibition area to inform members of the public about WIPO and its activities, and for a special exhibit on women inventors in September 1998.
The above activities raised the public profile of WIPO and its activities and gave effect to the principle of transparency. The press corps in Geneva welcomed this development. Press coverage on WIPO was significantly increased and was both positive and accurate. A culture of the importance of public communications began spreading within the Secretariat.
Public Information Products