Track E

E1 Fostering Greater Diversity in the Innovation Lifecycle *Presidential Series

Track: Other

Target Audience: Advanced

Jane M. Muir, University of Florida

Forough Ghahramani, Rutgers University
Chase Kasper, University of Southern Mississippi
Jessica Milli, Institute for Women's Policy Research

Women are vastly underrepresented in the patenting process. The science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) workforce is crucial to innovative capacity and global competitiveness. Yet women hold less than 25 percent of STEM jobs and are lead inventors on less than 10 percent of patents even though they make up nearly half of the total U.S. workforce. According to projections from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, women are not expected to achieve parity until 2092 if current rates continue.

In a separate study, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) found that more than 35 percent of U.S. innovators were born outside the United States while women accounted for just 12 percent of all U.S. innovators. Clearly there is an untapped opportunity to expand innovation. The study concluded that the United States should focus on expanding the supply of potential innovators, both by letting in more highly-skilled, STEM-educated immigrants and by increasing the pool of highly educated scientists and engineers, particularly women and minorities.

This session’s panel will discuss recommendations from the Association of Women in Science (AWIS) and others for technology transfer offices to capitalize on potential innovative capacity. Join an exploration of methodologies that ensure greater diversity in the innovation process and ultimately a more competitive economy.

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