Meaningful change: an introduction

The best intentions mean nothing if they are not backed up with genuine action – this is especially true of companies that find it all too easy to talk the talk. In this final section, we outline the steps that stakeholders across the IP universe can take to effect meaningful change, both in the workplace and in the wider community.

We hear how the new LGBTQI Legal Aid Fund offers support to organisations using the law and the courts to advance equality and, crucially, how your firm can get involved. Scrutinising internal operations, Finnegan Chief D&I Officer Esther Lim offers eight practical tips for recruiting and retaining diverse talent in an exclusive interview from the WTR archive.

On the other side of the globe, Aparna Mittal, founder of the Samāna Centre for Gender, Policy and Law, outlines the essential of a strategic roadmap for any businesses – including law firms – embarking on their DEI journey in India. Mittal examines the DEI landscape in the region and suggests that local law firms can take inspiration from the multinationals blazing a new trail there. This cross-industry focus lies at the heart of Debra Y Hughes' message from the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. An active member of the IP community, Hughes reflects on the benefits that various forms of mentorship have given her throughout her career, before outlining the key considerations from both sides of the mentor/mentee relationship.

It is absolutely critical that we provide support and opportunities to those around us – a top priority for IP offices around the world. We hear from the offices in Brazil, the Philippines, Singapore and the United Kingdom, which all reveal their efforts to improve accessibility and spread the IP message among diverse users and employees – as well as new initiatives in the pipeline for this year. Finally, INTA reflects on the vital role that IP associations play in all this. It reveals how the Women’s LeadershIP initiative and the INTA Foundation, to name but a few, are bringing intellectual property to new audiences and unlocking the potential of future diverse generations.

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