Lumenci for Invention Diversity
The Inventor Diversity Crisis
The lack of diversity among inventors is and has been at crisis levels.
The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation reported that, "Women represent just 12 percent of US innovators" and that U.S.-born minorities represent just 8 percent of U.S.-born innovators."
IP Watchdog added that "in the last decade, all-female invented patents constituted only about 4% of issued patents."
And the ABA writes that: "Black patentees are woefully underrepresented in America. ...[O]ne 2010 study found that from 1970 to 2006, black American inventors received six patents per million people, compared to 235 patents per million for all US inventors. Another 2016 study found that black Americans "apply for patents at nearly half the rate of whites."
This lack of diversity creates a substantial loss to the economy. IPLaw 360 writes that "[b]ringing more women, African Americans and other underrepresented groups into the innovation process could increase GDP by more than 4%, according to a new policy proposal from The Hamilton Project."
Importance of Diversity
Patents are a crucial indicator of technical eminence. They are listed on job applications, both internal and external, resumes, and employee networking profiles. By failing to ensure equity among the inventor population, we create a system that systematically creates disadvantages in job searches and promotion, creating disparities in opportunities. This disparity creates a reinforcing cycle of inequity.
"Innovativeness" exists regardless of demographic characteristics. While there is equity in innovation, what separates innovators from inventors is, in many cases, knowledge of the invention process, supplemented by institutional encouragement. By overcoming any knowledge gap and providing reinforcing encouragement, we can help create equal opportunities for all innovators.
Lumenci's Deliverables for Invention Diversity
Often, great inventions come not from existing or planned products, or anticipated areas of interest but rather from the creative minds of innovative people. Lumenci's expert patent mentors' team works directly with the innovators identified by our partner firms, coaching them on how to turn their creative work into patentable inventions. And while our partner firms make all decisions regarding who participates, we strongly encourage them to consider diversity.
These in-depth discussions typically include hands-on sessions where we work with your innovators to identify their contributions, coaching them on the invention process.
These engagements can take several forms, including:
We assign an experienced invention expert to work with innovators to identify and document the inventions that they have created.
In some cases, a company has expertise in a technology area, but no current product or product plans, yet it still wants to expand its patent portfolio in that area. Lumenci works with your innovators to help them develop inventions in identified strategic areas.
We work with your technologists to identify fruitful invention areas, vet the ideas with your technical leadership, and perform preliminary searches. We then review the results with your management team, which decides whether to proceed with the patent process or not.
And for each of these models, our experienced inventors can help identify the broadest possible inventions, including inventions in adjacent technologies areas. As appropriate, we identify inventions suggested by your work. We call this invention co-creation, and you own 100% of the inventions created.
More importantly, we teach your innovators how to teach others, teaching the teachers, allowing them to grow their patent knowledge and share it with their peers and your organization. Our services are intended to have a sustained impact even after our involvement ends. Showing such leadership is another way in which a diverse community of inventors can demonstrate their eminence. Our engagements include an "Introduction to Inventing" presentation to your company's technologists and Lumenci's "Invention Guidebook."