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Oliver Koppel / Enno Röben / Judith Wojda IW-Trends No. 1 28. March 2019 The Contribution of Female Inventors to German Patent Applications

Women continue to make only a small, and recently actually diminishing, contribution to patent activity in Germany. In 2016, female inventors accounted for just 4.4 per cent of all national patent applications filed with the German Patent and Trade Mark Office.

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The Contribution of Female Inventors to German Patent Applications
Oliver Koppel / Enno Röben / Judith Wojda IW-Trends No. 1 28. March 2019

The Contribution of Female Inventors to German Patent Applications

IW-Trends

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German Economic Institute German Economic Institute

Women continue to make only a small, and recently actually diminishing, contribution to patent activity in Germany. In 2016, female inventors accounted for just 4.4 per cent of all national patent applications filed with the German Patent and Trade Mark Office.

Among inventors from abroad living in Germany, however, the corresponding proportion was 8.2 per cent, twice as high as among inventors of German origin. It is therefore thanks to migration that the inventing community in Germany has become a little more female over the past decade. Women accounted for 8.4 per cent of patent applications from publicly funded basic research (e.g. at universities) and only 4.1 per cent of those from private companies, which account for the majority of all patent applications. In general, female inventors prefer to live in large conurbations. For example, they represent 6.1 per cent of patent applications from larger cities but only 3.0 per cent of those from sparsely populated areas. The main reason for the low proportion of women inventors is their choice of subjects at university and later careers. These tend to lead the majority of women graduates away from the fields of applied research and development where most patent applications originate. In Germany, intensive efforts to change this by the staging of events such as Girls'Day have largely failed to attract women to university courses in technology and the natural sciences and the contribution of female inventors to patent activity remains at a correspondingly low level.

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The Contribution of Female Inventors to German Patent Applications
Oliver Koppel / Enno Röben / Judith Wojda IW-Trends No. 1 28. March 2019

Oliver Koppel / Enno Röben / Judith Wojda: Der Beitrag weiblicher Erfinder zu deutschen Patentanmeldungen

IW-Trends

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German Economic Institute German Economic Institute

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