Women's History Month: An Interview with Tatiana Litvin-Vechnyak

As we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month, Tatiana Litvin-Vechnyak, Vice President for the Office of Technology Commercialization at NAI Member Institution Georgetown University and AUTM Board Member, discusses the importance of diverse perspectives in innovation and offers suggestions of how mentorship could help support women in the invention ecosystem.

Q: What is the importance of having diverse and unique perspectives in the innovation and invention ecosystem?
A: Diverse and unique perspectives in the innovation ecosystem are a must in order to fuel and sustain creativity! We each bring a unique experience into our daily lives and this unique experience informs the way we see, receive and process the world. As a result each and every one of us is capable of making invaluable contributions to the innovation ecosystem. If some voices have been missing for one reason or another – its about time that we wake up and help develop and amplify!

Q: What suggestions do you have on how mentorship could help support attracting, engaging, and retaining women inventors in the innovation and invention ecosystem?
A: We need to be relentless but we also need to understand that this is an iterative process. Amazing strides have been made in understanding what has deterred women in the past and progress is being made in addressing some of these. We will continue to try new ways to engage with women innovators, then pause to re-assess what’s working and what isn’t and then pivot if needed. We will keep doing this until we see the needle move. I think role models all around, ever present and celebrated are critical for women and girls of all ages and backgrounds. Alliaships across diverse groups are also critical.

To read about Dr. Litvin-Vechnyak’s work, visit: http://ow.ly/8Vch50NfA3u