Pic of Shamnad Basheer

Prof. (Dr.) Shamnad Basheer – Publications & Public Interest Interventions


  1. Overlapping Intellectual Property Rights (co-edited with Neil Wilkof), OUP 2012. (Indian edition of book with Indian introductory chapter, OUP India 2013).

Book Chapters

  1. In Search of the Self: Less is More in On Legal Education, Legal Profession and Access to Justice (N.R. Madhava Menon, Murali Neelakantan, Sumeet Malik (eds.), Eastern Book Company, 2019). 
  2. Who Am I? Of Patent Independence and ‘Adjudicative Regulators’ in 3 Kritika: Essays on Intellectual Property (Hanns Ullrich, Peter Drahos & Gustavo Ghidini (eds.), Edward Elgar Publishing, 2018) (co-authored with Rahul Bajaj). 
  3. The Making of Legal Elites and the IDIA of Justice in The Indian Legal Profession in the Age of Globalization (David B. Wilkins, Vikramaditya Khanna, David Trubek (eds.), Cambridge University Press, 2017) (co-authored with KV Krishnaprasad, Sree Mitra and Prajna Mohapatra) (SSRN version can be viewed here). 
  4. Comment 6.3 on Appropriation and Intellectual Property in the Informal Economy in The Informal Economy in the Developing Nations (Erika Kraemer-Mbula and Sacha Wunsch-Vincent (eds.), Cambridge University Press, 2016). 
  5. Pharmaceutical Patent Enforcement: A Developmental Perspective in Patent Law in Global Perspective (Bagley and Okediji (eds.), Oxford University Press, 2014) (co-authored with Jay Sanklecha and Prakruthi Gowda).
  6. The WIPO Development Agenda: Factoring in the “Technologically Proficient” Developing Countries in Implementing WIPO’s Development Agenda (Jeremy De Beer (ed.), Wilfred Laurier University Press/Centre for International Governance Innovation/International Development Research Centre, 2009) (co-authored with Annalisa Primi).
  7. Trademark Issues on the Internet: Domain Name Dispute Resolution, in Information Technology Law in India (Indian Law Institute, New Delhi, 2004).
  8. Media Laws in India in Investing in India (Asia Law and Practice, Euromoney Publications (Jersey) Limited, 2002).
  9. E-commerce in India: An E-volving E-jurisprudence in Asian E-volution (Asia Law & Practice, Euromoney Publications (Jersey) Limited, 2001).


  1. Was part of a team that prepared a global report for the ICTSD (International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development) on Specialised IP courts (authored the India section – Specialised IP Adjudication: An Indian Perspective, pp. 54-73) (2016).
  2. Prepared the India response for the Copyright User Rights Survey conducted by The Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property of the American University Washington College of Law (2016) (co-authored with Pankhuri Agarwal).  
  3. Was part of a team of international experts that prepared a WIPO Report on the Informal Economy and Intellectual Property (2014).
  4. Led the team that prepared a WHO report on Intellectual Property and Public Health (2014) (a draft of the report can be accessed here).
  5. Led the P-PIL team that submitted a report to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Parallel Imports (2011).
  6. Undertook a commissioned report for WIPO (Standing Committee on Patents) on exceptions/limitations to patents, as part of a team led by Professor Lionel Bentley (co-authored with Shashwat Purohit and Prashant Reddy).
  7. Prepared a report on the state of IP infrastructure in India for the EU as part of the EU TIDP Project (2006) (excerpts from the report can be viewed here and here).
  8. Undertook an extensive survey of Indian Patent Law and prepared reports on the compulsory licensing regime, experimental use provisions and patent pooling in India on behalf of the Institute of Intellectual Property (IIP), Tokyo and Japanese Patent Office (JPO) in 2004.
  9. Authored reports for the Intellectual Property Institute (IPI) on pharmaceutical patents and regulatory data protection (one on Limiting the Patentability of Pharmaceutical Inventions and Micro-organisms can be viewed here).

Papers (Refereed)

  1. Trumping TRIPS:  Patent Proficiency and The Evolution of an Evergreening Enigma, 18(1) Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal (OUCLJ) 16 (2018). 
  2. The End of Exclusivity: Towards a Compensatory Patent Commons, 58(2) IDEA 228 (2018).
  3. India’s New IP Policy: A Bare Act?, 13 The Indian Journal of Law and Technology (IJLT) 1 (2018) (co-authored with Pankhuri Agarwal).
  4. Making Patents Work: Of IP duties and Deficient Disclosures, 7(1) Queen Mary Journal of Intellectual Property 3 (2017).
  5. Artificial Invention: Mind the Machine, 13(3) Script-ed 335 (2016). 
  6. Alternative Incentives for Pharmaceutical Innovation, 27 Intellectual Property Journal (IPJ) 13 (2014).
  7. The Disability Exception and the Triumph of New Rights Advocacy, 5 NUJS L. Rev. 603 (2012). (co-authored with Rahul Cherian Jacob & Sam Taraporevala). 
  8. The Invention of an Investment Incentive for Pharmaceutical Innovation, Journal of World Intellectual Property 60 (2012).
  9. How to Achieve International Action on Falsified and Substandard Medicines, British Medical Journal (BMJ) 1 (2012) (co-authored with Amir Attaran, Donna Barry, Roger Bate, David Benton, James Chauvin, Laurie Garrett, Ilona Kickbusch, Jillian Clare Kohler, Kamal Midha, Paul Newton, Sania Nishtar, Paul Orhii & Martin McKee).
  10. The Doctrine of Equivalents in Various Patent Regimes: Does Anybody Have it Right?, 11(1) Yale J.L. & Tech. 261 (2009) (co-authored with Nicholas Pumfrey, Martin J. Adelman, Raj S. Dave, Peter Meier-Beck, Yukio Nagasawa, Maximilian Rospatt & Martin Sulsky).
  11. Exhausting Copyrights and Promoting Access to Education: An Empirical Take, 17 Journal of Intellectual Property Rights 335 (2012) (co-authored with Debanshu Khettry, Shambo Nandy and Sree Mitra).
  12. The Experimental Use Exception: A Developmental Perspective, 50(4) IDEA 831 (2010) (co-authored with Prashant Reddy).
  13. Outsourcing “Bayh Dole” to India: Lost in Transplantation, 23(2) Columbia Journal of Asian Law 269 (2010) (co-authored with Shouvik Guha).
  14. Turning TRIPS On Its Head: An IP “Cross Retaliation” Model for Developing Countries, 2(1) Law and Development Review, Berkeley Press (2010).
  15. Section 377 and the ‘Order of Nature’: Nurturing ‘Indeterminacy’ in the Law?, 2(3) NUJS Law Review 433 (2009) (co-authored with Sroyon Mukherjee & Karthy Nair). 
  16. The “Efficacy” of Indian Patent Law: Ironing out the Creases in Section 3(d), 5(2) Script-ed 232 (2008) (co-authored with Prashant Reddy).
  17. ‘Ducking’ TRIPS in India: A Saga Involving Novartis and the Legality of Section 3(d), 20(2) National Law School of India Review 131 (2008) (co-authored with Prashant Reddy).
  18. TRIPS, Patents and Parallel Imports: A Proposal for Amendment, 2 Indian Journal of Intellectual Property Law 63 (2009) (co-authored with Mrinalini Kochupillai). 
  19. Exhausting’ Patent Rights in India: Parallel Imports and TRIPS Compliance, 13 Journal of Intellectual Property Rights 486 (2008) (co-authored with Mrinalini Kochupillai).
  20. Popping Patented Pills: Europe and a Decade’s Dose of TRIPs, 28(4) EIPR 1 (2006) (co-authored with David Vaver) (in French translation as  “Overdose de medicaments brevets: l’Europe dans un ‘TRIPS’ depuis dix ans” in Bernard Remiche & Jorge Kors (eds.), L’Accord ADPIC: dix ans après (Éds. Larcier, Brussels, 2007) 129; (reprinted in N. Sudarshan (ed.), Public Health and Law (ICFAI University, Law Books Division, Hyderabad, 2008).
  21. India’s New Patent Regime: Aiding Access or Abetting “Genericide”?, 8(5) International Journal of Biotechnology (2006).
  22. Taming of the Flu: Working Through the Tamiflu Patents in India, 11(2) Journal of Intellectual Property Rights 113 (2006) (co-authored with Tahir Amin).
  23. India’s Tryst with TRIPS: The Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005, 1 Indian J. L. & Tech. 15 (2005). (reprinted in in Edson Beas Rodrigues Jr. and Fabrício Polido (ed), Propriedade Intelectual (Rio de Janeiro, Elsevier, 2007) and in N. Sudarshan (ed.), Public Health and Law (ICFAI University, Law Books Division, Hyderabad, 2008).
  24. Policy Style Reasoning at the Indian Patent Office, 3 Intellectual Property Quarterly (IPQ) 309 (2005) (paper based on BCL thesis submitted at Univ of Oxford that was the winner of second prize in a contest by Stanford Technology Law Review (STLR)).
  25. Block Me Not: How “Essential” are Patented Genes?, 2 Journal of Law, Technology and Policy 55 (2005) (reprinted in Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, September 2006, 11(5) 309-390).

Other Papers

  1. Regulating Indian Legal Education: Some Thoughts for Reform, Concept Note prepared for committee headed by Gopal Subramanium, SG, India (2010) (co-authored with Sroyon Mukherjee).
  2. The “Glivec” Patent Saga: A 3-d perspective on Indian patent policy and TRIPS Compliance, ATRIP (2007) (Best Paper Award by ATRIP).
  3. Block Me Not: Genes as Essential Facilities, IIP Bulletin 106 (2004).
  4. Regulatory Data Protection under Article 39.3 of TRIPS: Towards a Compensatory Liability Standard, India Paper No. 108, Intellectual Property Institute (IPI), London (commissioned by the IPI) (2006).
  5. TRIPS Compatibility Review of the Patents Amendment Act 2005, India Paper No. 106, Intellectual Property Institute (IPI), London (commissioned by the IPI) (2006).
  6. The Patents Amendment Act, 2005: Implications In and Outside India, 62 IIP 43 (co-authored with Mrinalini Kochupillai).
  7. Unleashing the True Potential of Convergence: Will the Law be a Damp Squib, 8 Computer and Telecommunications Law Review 87 (2002) (co-authored with Pravin Anand).
  8. IP Owners Win Indian World Cup Contest, Managing Intellectual Property (Sweet and Maxwell, London, 2002) (co-authored with Pravin Anand).
  9. India Liberalizes Domain Name Policy, International Internet Law Review (Sweet and Maxwell, London, February 2001).
  10. Patenting Genes and Gene Sequences: The Next El Dorado, Electronic Database of Intellectual Property (EDIP), Oxford (2001).
  11. Confidentiality of Genetic Information: Need for Legislation, 5 Law & Medicine 101 (1999).
  12. Cash in on Geno-Dollars, Science Express (2000).
  13. Internet and Intellectual Property Rights, 30(8) Chartered Secretary (2000) (co-authored with Pravin Anand & Keshav S. Dhakad).
  14. Establishing Rights/Legitimate Interests in a Domain Name: Cyber squatters Get Creative, 7 Computer and Telecommunications Law Review 1 (2001).
  15. Compulsory Licensing Under Competition Law: the Concept of Essentiality Know IP, 2(1) Stockholm Network Monthly Bulletin on IPRS (2006).

Newspaper/Magazine Editorials

  1. Practice made perfect, India Today, June 21, 2019.
  2. Bar Council of India’s discriminatory age cap on study of law is nonsensical, The Print, April 2, 2019.
  3. The SC ruling that a blind or a deaf person can’t be a judge goes against the Constitution’s spirit, Hindustan Times, January 26, 2019.
  4. From trial court to Supreme Court and back, the Monsanto patent battle is far from over, The Print, January 11, 2019. 
  5. Disney can use ‘Hakuna Matata’, Hindustan Times, December 31, 2018. 
  6. Immoral compass?, Indian Business Law Journal, October 12, 2018 (co-authored with Pankhuri Agarwal).
  7. Twisting the Truth Around Aadhaar in the Land of Luddites, The Wire, June 27, 2018.
  8. Make pharmaceutical patents work in the public interest, Business Line, February 2, 2018.
  9. Beauty and the Regulatory Beast, The Hindu, August 14, 2017 (on gene editing techniques, designer babies and regulatory concerns).
  10. Measuring Judicial Merit, The Hindu, October 11, 2017 (on working out a rigorous metric to measure judicial performance).
  11. Times Now Versus Arnab Goswami: Who will win the IP battle?, News Laundry, May 24, 2017.
  12. Time to Break In India, The Hindu, February 16, 2017 (on how we need to rescript India’s IP regime). 
  13. Publishers vs Pupils: Delhi High Court has struck a blow for the right to copy copyrighted material, Scroll, December 13, 2016. 
  14. Intellectual Property Law vs Competition Law, Livemint, December 7, 2016. 
  15. Generics vs Big Pharma Reloaded, The Hindu, November 23, 2016 (on the move to introduce data exclusivity).
  16. Leonard Cohen: Of Love, Light and Copyright, The Wire, November 16, 2016. 
  17. Copyright as Exception, Indian Express, October 19, 2016 (on the DU photocopy copyright case).
  18. The Battle over BT Cotton, The Hindu, October 4, 2016 (on the patent battles between GMO producers and seed companies). 
  19. Delhi High Court Virtually Busts ‘Property’ Rhetoric in the IPR Narrative, DNA, September 22, 2016.
  20. In Bollywood’s Battle Against Piracy, A Neutral Ombudsman Might Be the Answer, The Wire, August 23, 2016.
  21. Judging Judges by the Length of their Judgments is a Bad Idea, The Wire, June 16, 2016 (critiquing tendency to judge judges by pages).
  22. India’s New IP Policy: A Bare Act, Deccan Herald, June 5, 2016.
  23. An IP Policy with no Innovation, The Hindu, May 17, 2016 (critique of India’s new IP policy).
  24. Patents over Patients, Indian Express (critiquing government move to throttle public health safeguards), March 14, 2016.
  25. An Extra-Legal League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, The Wire, June 25, 2015 (critiquing the closed cabals that control the legal ecosystem).
  26. Jugaad Justice?, Livemint, April 27, 2015 (on creativity in the Indian Judiciary).
  27. These Rancid Rankings, Indian Express, February 10, 2015 (critiquing IP rankings for their flawed methodology).
  28. Patented Price Gouging and the Enduring Enigma of Drug Costs, Livemint, December 17, 2014 (advocating that drug makers be forced to disclose individual R&D costs for drugs).
  29. Fixing the Tribunal Mess, Financial Express, October 10, 2014 (analyzing the SC decision striking down the National Tax Tribunal as Unconstitutional).
  30. New Drug Era, Indian Express, September 27, 2014, (highlighting the erosion of the innovator:generic divide).
  31. Judging a Democratic Deficit, Indian Express, September 9, 2014 (advocating that there be public consultation in all Indian law/policy making).
  32. Patently Positive, Financial Express, June 20, 2014 (arguing that Indian IP law is not biased and protective of IP owners too).
  33. Innovation that Includes, Indian Express, April 26, 2014 (discussing the need to democratize the innovation ecosystem and make it “inclusive”).
  34. From Ambedkar to Doniger: Can Copyright Law Rescue Books at Risk, Firstpost, March 28, 2014 (discussing compulsory licensing, copyright and free speech).
  35. India’s IP Regime: Patent Error, Indian Express, February 20, 2014 (critiquing the US industry ranking of Indian IP).
  36. When Fair is Foul, and Foul is Fair, The Hindu, December 30, 2013 (discussing the Khobrogade scandal and sexual harassment controversies in India and why a strict legal view is not the answer).
  37. Patent Lies and Convenient Truths, The Hindu, September 4, 2013 (discussing the hypocrisy of the US in the international IP dialogues).
  38. Why Students Need the Right to Copy, The Hindu, April 26, 2013 (discussing the OUP copyright case against Delhi University pertaining to student photocopying).
  39. Patent with a Purpose, Indian Express, April 3, 2013 (analyzing the Novartis decision in the larger context of Pharma Innovation Policy).
  40. Publishers vs Students, Indian Express, August 30, 2012 (discussing the copyright photocopying controversy between Delhi University and book publishers).
  41. Set the Bar Higher, Indian Express, May 2012 (discussing the future of legal education reform in India).
  42. CLAT: A Question of Aptitude, Times of India, April 9, 2012 (discussing CLAT and strategies for preparation).
  43. A Life Saver, Indian Express, March 15, 2012 (discussing India’s first compulsory licensing order).
  44. Let’s Bridge the Democratic Deficit, Times of India (Crest Edition), April 16, 2011 (advocating for opening up the policy making process in the wake of Hazare agitation) (an excerpt of this piece can be viewed here).
  45. Govt for Legalising Parallel Import of Copyright Works; Publishers Oppose, Economic Times, March 17, 2011 (dealing with parallel imports and access to education).
  46. Remainders of the Day: A Case for Parallel Imports (dealing with parallel imports of books), Livemint, February 25, 2011.
  47. Build Patent Regime on Fortified Law, Economic Times, October 7, 2010 (with Prashant Reddy: discussing the unconstitutionality of the present compulsory licensing scheme).
  48. In the Service of Privacy, Times of India (Crest Edition), August 7, 2010 (advocating for a privacy legislation).
  49. Sold for a Song, Indian Express, July 16, 2010 (advocating for better remuneration and royalties for copyright artists, lyricists and musicians.
  50. Don’t Burn the Digital Books, Indian Express, February 11, 2010 (dealing with copyright issues in the context of the Google Book Search project).
  51. ‘3 Idiots’ and the Morality of Numbers, Indian Express, January 7, 2010 (dealing with the copyright controversy involving Chetan Bhagat and the movie 3 Idiots).
  52. Saying No to the Wrong Drugs, Indian Express, September 24, 2009 (dealing with definition of spurious drugs).
  53. Encouraging Drug Innovation, Livemint, August 27, 2009 (dealing with the revised Mashelkar Committee Report).
  54. The Law, Smoke and Mirrors, Livemint, March 12, 2009 (dealing with a ban on the advertising of “smoking”).
  55. Creating Informal IP Norms, Livemint, December 23, 2008.
  56. A Method to the Madness, Livemint, November 5, 2008 (discussing software patents in India).
  57. Indian Patent Bill: Let’s Not be too Hasty, Sci-Dev, September 10, 2008 (Bayh Dole Bill).
  58. Make that Bargain Equitable, Livemint, August 26, 2008 (discussing WTO-TRIPS and cross retaliation).
  59. The Potency of a Middle Path, Livemint, July 9, 2008 (discussing patents and drug regulation).
  60. Break with Tradition, Indian Express, July 5, 2008 (discussing the Kerala TK protection model).
  61. Ranbaxy-Daiichi Merger: An Emerging Ardhnarishwar Model? DNA, July 10, 2008.
  62. The Rhetoric of Patent Busting, Indian Express, April 12, 2008 (discussing the Roche vs Cipla (Tarceva) litigation.
  63. Patent Problem, DNA, August 29, 2007 (discussing the pharma vs generic wars).
  64. Pharma MNCs Bullying Govt with China Sword?, Economic Times, August 14, 2007.
  65. Empty Allegations, DNA, February 25, 2007 (discussing the Mashelkar Committee Report Controversy).
  66. Baazee, Bajaj, and Bailing out the Law, Economic Times, February 5, 2005.
  67. Of Generics, Pharmaceutical Patents and the Countdown to 2005: A Note to Policy Makers, Economic Times, September 26, 2004 (dealing with pharma mailbox applications).

Blog Posts

  1. SpicyIP – all posts can be viewed here.
  2. Law and Other Things – all posts can be viewed here.


  1. Interview with Late Professor (Dr.) Shamnad Basheer, Iran Patent Center (October 26, 2019). 
  2. An unpublished 2016 interview with Shamnad Basheer: Our Harts are in our villages, Legally India (September 2019).
  3. Authenticating Open Access: “We must put in more rigour into the kind and quality of publications that come out through open access projects…” says Professor Shamnad Basheer, Founder, IDIA and SpicyIP blog, Juris Open (March 15, 2018).
  4. Parley with Prof. Dr. Shamnad Basheer, Founder of SpicyIP & Increasing Diversity by Increasing Access to Legal Education [IDIA], Libertatem (December 2015).
  5. How to Secure Creative Capital, India Today (Aspire) (April 2015).
  6. Asking the Right Questions to Find the Law School Right for you, CLAT (date unknown). 
  7. Maverick Holistic Lawyers, Career 360 (January 9, 2015).
  8. Igniting Iconoclasm, Audi Alteram Partem, NLU Delhi (October 2014).
  9. Novartis Verdict will Help Genuine Drug Innovation, The Hindu (April 6, 2013).
  10. The Current Patent System is Deeply Flawed, 29(8) Frontline (May 2012).
  11. Law and Behold, The Hindu (January 7, 2011) (on the Common Law Admission Test [CLAT]).
  12. Changemakers, Times of India (November 2, 2011) (on legal education).
  13. IDIA, Bar and Bench (May 5, 2010) (discussing IDIA project and access to education).
  14. Access to Education, India Law Journal (June 2010) (discussing access to legal education).
  15. Encourage Innovation with Holistic Approach, The Hindu (October 13, 2008).
  16. The Novartis Saga — Prescription for Patent Strategy in India, The Hindu Business Line (September 5, 2007).
  17. We need to evolve our own set of distinctive intellectual property norms’, The Hindu Business Line (February 24, 2007).
  18. In Person Interview, 4(6) Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice 447-448 (2009).

Public Interest Litigation & Interventions

  1. Was academic intervenor cum amicus before the Supreme Court in a landmark patent case, Novartis v. Union of India, where the Court relied significantly on arguments that he had advanced.
  2. Filed a writ petition against the UIDAI seeking damages for breach of privacy.
  3. Filed a writ petition against the Government of India, challenging the constitutionality of the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB), India’s specialized IP tribunal. Court ruled in his favour striking down key aspects of the IPAB selection process.
  4. Filed PIL to direct the government to enforce India’s “patent working” disclosure requirements. Delhi High Court passed two largely favourable orders. Comments on Issues Related to Working of Patents under the Patents Act, 1970 can be viewed here
  5. Filed a PIL before the Supreme Court in 2015 arguing that CLAT must be institutionalised and not left to individual law schools to conduct. Matter yet to be decided.
  6. Filed a PIL before the Delhi High Court in July 2014 arguing that the RTI must be given pre-eminence over all other statutes when it comes to information dispensation to the public.
  7. Intervened in a copyright law suit as part of a group of academics (SPEAK) interested in furthering access to education. This law suit was filed by OUP and other leading publishers against Delhi University for copyright infringement in creating course packs. The court ruled in our favour and the Supreme court refused to intervene.
  8. Helped slum dwellers file a writ petition to prevent the demolition of their dwellings in Kolkata. The Kolkata high court was pleased to grant a stay against eviction of slum dwellers without granting them alternative housing.
  9. Helped file a writ petition for an IDIA scholar challenging a rule that prevents blind candidates from becoming district judges. 
  10. Helped Michael Sam, an orphaned IDIA scholar file an impleadment application before the Supreme Court challenging the age bar imposed by the Bar Council of India (BCI) for the study of law. 
  11. Helped track sailors who went missing on the high seas, owing to a ruthless network of middlemen who sold them to foreign ships that exploited their labour under minimal regulatory oversight.
  12. Investigated the extent of working of pharmaceutical patents in India. Filed RTIs to determine the extent of “working” of pharmaceutical patents in India. Compiled report and presented to Controller General Kurian. As a result of this investigation, the Government made all working statements publicly available.
  13. Filed a writ petition before the Gujarat High Court on behalf of an underprivileged student who was denied admission to GNLU on an arbitrary ground.
  14. Led the P-PIL team that submitted a petition and a research note on the rights of visually impaired and provision of scribe facility in 2012, resulting in organisers of CLAT and AILET adopting a disabled friendly policy for them.
  15. Submitted a letter to DIPP in 2016 highlighting its constitutional incompetence to issue an office memorandum interpreting Section 31D of the Copyright Act, 1957 (dealing with statutory licenses in favour of broadcasting organisations that communicate copyrighted content to the public) to cover ‘internet’ broadcasts as well.
  16. Submitted a petition to the BCI to permit legal academics to practice law in 2019 (see here and here).
  17. Made written submissions on certain aspects of the Copyright (Amendment) Bill, 2010 as also the Copyright Act, 1957 to the Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Human Resources Development (HRD) in 2010 (co-authored with Prashant Reddy).
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