Worldwide 02 May 2018

More women among patent inventors

Most inventors are still men. However, in 2017, there were at least one female inventor listed in 31% of the 243,500 international patent applications received by WIPO. The trend is positive. Ten years ago, the corresponding figure was only 23%.

Sweden is unusually far down the list. In the statistics of the largest number of patent applications per inhabitants, Sweden is ranked second in the world after Switzerland. However, when it comes to women listed among inventors, Sweden is in place 15, with women only included in 24% of the international patent applications. At the top of the list are South Korea (50%), China (48%) and Belgium (36%).

The fields of technology areas with the highest percentage of female inventors in patent applications to WIPO are biotechnology, medicine and chemistry.

Percentage of published international patents with at least one female listed as inventor

  • 1 South Korea 50.3%
  • 2 China 47.9%
  • 3 Belgium 35.7%
  • 4 Spain 35.4%
  • 5 USA 32.8%
  • 6 France 35.5%
  • 7 If 28.3%
  • 8 Netherlands 28.3%
  • 9 Switzerland 28.1%
  • 10 Israel 26.3%
  • 11 Finland 25.3%
  • 12 Canada 24.8%
  • 13 Denmark 24.1%
  • 14 United Kingdom 23.9%
  • 15 Sweden 23.6%
  • 16 Australia 21.6%
  • 17 Japan 20.0%
  • 18 Germany 19.0%
  • 19 Italy 18.6%
  • 20 Austria 15.9%

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