The European Patent Office (EPO) has recently published a new study “Women’s participation in inventive activity” that aims to provide policymakers and the general public with insights and evidence on gender and patenting in Europe. The study examines women’s participation in patenting activity at the EPO in the 38 Member States and the main findings show that while the women inventor rate in Europe has been rising in recent decades, parity with men has still not been reached.
According to the data from 2010 to 2019, Latvia (30.6%), Portugal (26.8%), Croatia (25.8%), Spain (23.2%) and Lithuania (21.4%) have the highest proportion of women inventors, while Germany (10.0%), Luxembourg (10.0%), Liechtenstein (9.6%) and Austria (8.0%) have the lowest.
The study also highlights that the technology sector with the highest share of women inventors is chemistry, while mechanical engineering has the lowest share.
Following the launch of the study, the EPO organises three virtual roundtables on the current state of women in IP and innovation. These events will gather outstanding women inventors, heads of international patent offices, patent attorneys and representatives of academia to discuss the barriers to overcoming the gender gap and potential measures to enhance women’s contributions to innovation.
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