At The American, a new article Bleeding Biotech, arguing for better protection of intellectual property in data. I frame the question as
In the end, we will never be able to arrive at agreement on the perfect period for data protection for biological research. There is still no agreement on the proper period for patent protection, and that system has been around for hundreds of years. A 20-year period was picked for patents, and it seems to work well enough, so the failure to achieve perfection is not of great concern.
With regard to biotechnology and data exclusivity, we are and will remain similarly ignorant. So the question is actually quite simple: what are the costs of error in each direction?
The answer is that the costs of too much protection are low, or non-existent; the costs of too little are very high. Which should make the decision easy.