IP Inclusive’s senior leaders’ think tank is delighted to announce the launch of a new “Senior Leaders’ Pledge”. Its aim is to help senior professionals provide visible and active leadership on improving diversity and inclusion (D&I) in their organisations.

The new pledge has already been signed by senior representatives from AA Thornton, Abel + Imray, Appleyard Lees, Beck Greener, Boult Wade Tennant, D Young & Co, EIP, Haseltine Lake Kempner, HGF, Kilburn & Strode, Mathys & Squire, Mewburn Ellis, Murgitroyd, Page White and Farrer, Potter Clarkson, Swindell & Pearson, TLIP and W P Thompson, as well as by the Chief Executives of the patent and trade mark professionals’ representative bodies CIPA and CITMA.

Unlike the main IP Inclusive EDI Charter – which the Leaders’ Pledge supplements – this is a commitment entered into by individuals not organisations. Intended for signature by managing partners, chief executives and others in senior, decision-making roles, it includes a promise to work alongside more junior colleagues to effect positive change. It can be signed by as many individuals from the leadership team as appropriate: the more the better.

The Leaders’ Pledge consists of eight high-level commitments, shown below. Alongside each of these, a signatory commits to one or more practical steps they will take to fulfil their pledge.

These steps can be tailored to suit the size, structure and resources of the individual business and how far it is already along its D&I journey. What matters most is that they are publicised, both internally and externally, to demonstrate that D&I will not be a box-ticking exercise, will not be consigned to silos within the organisation, but will be championed at the highest levels.

The initial signatories to the pledge are listed below and include individuals from a range of patent and trade mark firms. You can read their personal commitments by following the links in their names. We expect other individuals in leadership roles to be signing up over the coming months and their organisations will be publicising this in their individual D&I comms.

The “think tank” that created the pledge consists of senior leaders from private sector IP practices, who recognise the key role they can play in improving diversity and inclusion in their particular section of the IP professions. We hope to make the pledge more widely available, to all IP Inclusive Charter signatories, soon – and will encourage senior leaders throughout the IP sector to consider signing up or adopting something similar to suit their own organisations.

The full pledge, with ideas for its implementation, can be downloaded here.


The IP Inclusive Senior Leaders’ Pledge



I commit to:

1. Providing visible and proactive leadership to improve D&I in my organisation

2. Taking D&I seriously at the highest level

3. Embedding and valuing D&I throughout the organisational culture

4. Building trust and safe spaces throughout the organisation

5. Educating myself and my colleagues about D&I issues

6. Sharing my privileges

7. Insisting on equity

8. Working closely with HR and/or management colleagues to achieve this



Founding signatories

As at its launch on 29 July 2021, the following people have signed up to the Senior Leaders’ Pledge.

We hope soon to create a dedicated website page with an up-to-date list of pledge signatories.
[Note: this is now available here.]


Background information

The IP Inclusive senior leaders’ think tank is a joint project between IP Inclusive, CIPA and CITMA, established in November 2020. It is led by our Lead Executive Officer Andrea Brewster and Gwilym Roberts of Kilburn & Strode. You can read more about its initial meeting and its objectives here.



Page published on 29th July 2021
Page last modified on 5th August 2021
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