Bloomberg Law
July 14, 2020, 10:01 AM

For Black Inventors, Road to Owning Patents Paved With Barriers

Matthew Bultman
Matthew Bultman

A U.S. Patent and Trademark Office council will begin tackling a huge challenge this year: boosting the percentage of patent owners who are Black—a figure that hovers in the single digits by some estimates.

The U.S. patent system, long regarded as among the world’s best, has also been stubbornly difficult for Black inventors to access. Researchers say the underrepresentation means the U.S. is missing out on significant inventions, with fewer perspectives and ideas in the pipeline.

Black people and other minority inventors have been left behind for many reasons, including too few resources, a lack of access to capital, and ...

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