Diversity & inclusion is high on the agenda for Mewburn Ellis, it’s part of our business plan and is being driven by our management board. We already have strong gender diversity across the firm as a whole with 41% men and 59% women (as at end April 2020) and are looking at how we can be a more inclusive firm.
We want a firm that has diversity of thought, ideas and viewpoints and where all our people, regardless of their background, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, disability or sexual orientation feel they belong.
We want to lead in the area of diversity and inclusion. This is important to our firm, our people and our clients, and we intend to embed it into our culture. To achieve this we are working with external D&I specialist consultants Brook Graham, to undertake an audit of our existing culture, processes and practices in order to design a dedicated D&I strategy for the firm. This consists of an awareness building programme, staff survey and focus groups to explore key themes and from this we will build a robust plan that we believe will benefit our people, our clients and our business as a whole.
We're delighted to be working with Brook Graham, their help has been invaluable in understanding how to approach this project. They have now delivered D&I training to our partnership and are currently helping us with our whole firm survey. The response from our people has been great and we look forward to seeing the survey feedback and understanding how best we can develop our firm.
We will make sure that equality and diversity are celebrated, that we have a firm that has diversity of thought, ideas and viewpoints. We want all our people, regardless of their background, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, disability or sexual orientation to feel they belong and where they can bring their 'true self' to work.
We are also focussed on developing more women as attorneys and encouraging more girls and students from disadvantaged backgrounds to study STEM subjects. 50% of our 32 technical trainees in 2020 are women (national average of women graduating in STEM subjects in 2019 according to UCAS was 26%). We are also currently in discussions with the British Science Association to become a national sponsor of their CREST Awards and a corporate partner for British Science Week 2021 which focus on encouraging more girls and students from disadvantaged backgrounds into STEM.
We are a member of IP Inclusive, and our Managing Partner Richard Clegg is part of the IP Inclusive Senior Leaders' Diversity Think Tank. They met recently to bring together senior leaders from the private sector patent and trade mark professions for the first time to ensure that diversity can be championed in the highest ranks, in partners’ meetings and boardrooms, and that it gets the recognition, and the hands-on support, that it deserves.
We are also supporting Women in IP through AIPLA and regular inclusivity columns in our magazine Forward, as well as many more planned. We also monitor our gender pay gap figures, even though we aren't legally required to do this yet. Read more about our inclusivity initiatives and a summary of our gender pay gap here.
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We have an easily-accessible office in central London, as well as a number of regional offices throughout the UK and an office in Munich, Germany. We’d love to hear from you, so please get in touch.