ChIPs Reports a Year of Growth and Change Around the World

Women's Legal Organization Cites ‘Urgent Need for Diversity in Tech and IP Law’

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, USA, June 17, 2024 / — ChIPs Network, the global community representing more than 7,000 women in technology and intellectual property law and policy, has published its annual Impact Report outlining new growth and initiatives in the past year.


“ChIPs is one community with 35 regional chapters and special-interest communities working together to drive change,” said Executive Director Joan Toth and Board Chair Katherine Minarik of Coinbase. “In the 19 years since our founding, ChIPs has grown to 7,000 members in North America, Latin America, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Europe.

“ChIPs rapid growth is driven by the still urgent need for diversity in tech and IP law.”

— Joan Toth

This “rapid growth is driven by the still urgent need for diversity in tech and IP law — just 21% of patent lawyers and 33% of intellectual property lawyers are women,” according to research cited in the report. “Gender parity is only slightly improved in-house, where just 38% of general counsels, 38% of associate GCs, and 40% of assistant GCs are women,” ChIPs reported.

“Our members are changing that,” Minarik and Toth said. “They include attorneys at some of the world’s most leading law firms, in-house counsel, and representatives from government agencies and the bench. Their organizations include the most influential firms in tech and IP law and some of the world’s most innovative companies.

A transformative year

“Last year was a year of growth and change for ChIPs and our membership,” ChIPs reported. “The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office hosted ChIPs NextGen Summit 2023 outside Washington, D.C. The ChIPs Global Summit won high marks and set new records in San Francisco. And 81 in-person and virtual events engaged more than 4,000 members worldwide.”

Other high points cited in the report included ChIPs’ third European Summit in Brussels; a new online member Community; the second cohort of ChIPs General Counsel Bootcamp; two Mock Pitch programs; webinars featuring our five DEIB Honor Roll winners; and a new Accelerators webinar series with top law firms.

Minarik and Toth thanked “everyone who advanced our mission in 2023: Our Board of Directors, our chapter leaders and committee members, our sponsors and, most important, our members, who helped drive change and support each other.”