Putting Passion in IP

Cipher Vision Podcast - Putting Passion in IP with Anjanette Lecher, Director, Intellectual Asset Management at Corning Incorporated.

September 29, 2023

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Episode 8  in Season 3 of the Cipher Vision Podcast series features Anjanette Lecher, Director, Intellectual Asset Management at Corning Incorporated.

Anjanette shared with us her love of intellectual property. She discussed how to take a customer-centric approach when analyzing and presenting data. She also stressed the importance of adopting the correct tools to support efficiency and visualizations.

She highlighted the importance of a diverse team and the need to make IP accessible.

She chats to the hosts of the Cipher Vision podcast, who are:

Conversation Highlights

How has the perception of intellectual property changed over time?

The value of intellectual property has evolved into a wonderful appreciation for the data analytics behind our competitive IP. 

15 years ago, the role of an IP analyst was not as prolific as it is today. There was just a handful of IP analysts in the company. I took it as a personal mission to really understand the voice of our customers.   [I asked:] ‘What is going well and what would they like to see in order to be able to really provide value to the organisation?’

On the importance of visualizing data 

I would try a variety of visualizations and different analytical approaches to patents. One might ask, ‘How do you even analyse a patent?’, but patents are still data. 

The visualization of data is much more powerful than sending a spreadsheet or just sending a list of patents and saying, ‘you should read these’.

It’s really analyzing what the patents say. And then presenting it in a manner that explains why the business should care.

I think what the Intellectual Asset Management function excels at is taking an enormous amount of data, analyzing the data, categorizing the data and summarizing the data in a form that is digestible from the business.

Corning’s diversity initiatives

The Intellectual Property Owners Education Foundation (IPO EF) is an organization whose strategic mission is to create an awareness about the importance of IP, with a focus on underrepresented or underserved communities. 

I felt that this organization really spoke to me as a person, coming from an underrepresented community or tribal community. And that I made it my mission to help support their strategic mission.

IPO EF has several free materials to educate the next generation of innovators. We took this curriculum, and the first place we started with was our local Girl Scouts. 

The next place we went to was the Tuscarora Indian Nation – my tribal community – and we presented to the fifth and sixth graders about what is IP.

And we also try to focus on explaining it and teaching it to them from their lens as Native American people. What is it in their daily lives, that surrounds them that has an element of intellectual property associated with it?

Understanding diversity within Corning

Corning signed on with the diversity pledge in late 2021 as a public commitment to studying, analyzing and working to improve the gender disparity in our inventorship. 

We have worked over the course of the past 18 months to understand what is our women inventor rate, which is the number of unique women inventors, over the total number of unique inventors.

It is 16% and so that exceeds the USPTO reported average in their last progress and potential report.

We also have studied and analyzed our patents with women inventors and that number is outstanding. It’s at 34%, compared to what we see in the US progress and potential report of 22%. 

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