SXSW 2021

Strengthening the Innovation Ecosystem


The share of patents that include at least one woman as an inventor increased from about 7% in the 1980s to 21% by 2016. And though the number of women in science and engineering classes and workplaces is growing, men continue to outnumber women at the top levels of science, innovation, and invention. Employers, educational institutions, and other organizations strive to correct the gender imbalance in STEM and innovation, but where does the discrepancy between men and women in innovation come from, and what can be done to change it? How do we achieve gender parity in STEM fields, particularly when it comes to invention and innovation? We must level the playing field so that all innovators, regardless of gender or background, may have the opportunity to change the world.

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  1. Women and minorities are underrepresented in the STEM fields and specifically, on patents. This needs to change.
  2. We are under-utilizing so many bright minds. We need to analyze how we do things in the STEM field and implement changes going forward.
  3. It starts with YOU! From the earliest days of schooling and development to adulthood, we need to inspire and provide opportunities for growth.



Mandy Kraft, Public Affairs Specialist, USPTO

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