In the article, “Gender bias toward men in patent awards results in less biomedical innovation for women, study suggests,” STAT reported on a recent study that found that female inventors are more likely to come up with biomedical ideas and products that focus on the needs of women whereas male inventors are more inclined to focus on products for men. The publication turned to intellectual property (IP) partner Mercedes Meyer for her thoughts on why it’s important for companies to increase gender diversity in IP.
Meyer, who helped develop the Intellectual Property Owners Association’s “Gender Diversity in Innovation Toolkit,” also advised on how companies can improve their diversity.
She noted to STAT that women bring solutions to the issues they face in their daily lives. “We all will patent and innovate around the problems that confront us,” she said. Because there are still fewer women inventing, many solutions to these everyday problems may never come to light. “It’s the loss of solutions that could help 50% of the population in the world,” Meyer added.
Meyer highlighted the importance of mentoring, noting that once women are in positions where they can invent, they need strategic mentoring and training to help them commercialize their ideas.