You will be hard-pressed to find a person who will argue that America is a country that has flourished because of creativity.
Of course, our great nation was also founded on courage, independence and integrity. However, without creative minds leading our country, it most definitely would not be what it is today.
Where would we be without Thomas Edison and his more than 1,000 patents for products that changed our world? Try living without the light bulb, phonograph and what eventually led to computer transistors and see how exciting life would be!
When Gideon Sundback creatively decided that 10 fasteners per inch worked better to secure clothing in 1917, America’s world of fashion was forever changed.
As these creative inventions and innovations blossomed, where do you think they would have gone if they hadn’t been protected? One person’s creative idea can become another person’s stolen hopes and dreams if not for the world of Intellectual Property Law.
Of course, patent protection is just one facet of IP law. However, it is a very important one. According to Legal Times, since 1990, the number of patents in America has increased each year by 30 to 40 percent. Over that same time period, software patents have increased by 200 percent.
In contrast, BCG Attorney Search reports that among all practicing attorneys in the U.S., only 1.5 percent specialize in IP law.
So, with patents increasing by leaps and bounds and other IP practice areas also on the rise, where are the IP jobs?
The first place to start is in our nation’s capital – Washington, D.C.
Robyn Ginsberg, Senior Managing Director with BCG Attorney Search, said that the IP law market is definitely booming in Washington, D.C.
“The IP market in D.C. continues to be consistently active across all sub-specialties, including patent litigation, patent prosecution, soft IP and technology transactions,” Ginsberg explained. “Firms are primarily seeking attorneys with either an engineering background, particularly in the computer software/electrical space, or those with a pharmaceutical/life science background.”
Additionally, Ginsberg said that BCG Attorney Search is seeing a consistent demand for candidates with a chemistry background, as well as those with a computer science and electrical background.
While IP law seems to be on an upward trend nationwide, Ginsberg said there has been a steady growth in Washington, D.C. for IP attorneys over the past two years. Why is that? What it is about this area that makes it attractive for IP attorneys?
“Because Washington, DC is home to the International Trade Commission (ITC) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), it is often considered to be the center of the national IP universe,” Ginsberg said. “As a result, DC has consistently been a very strong IP market.”
So, since it has been established that IP law is on the rise and that Washington, D.C. is a vital practice location, what can attorneys do to become more marketable there?
“The most marketable IP attorneys are those with an advanced degree in a desired area, such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Biology, Organic Chemistry or Mechanical Engineering,” Ginsberg explained.
“Additionally, candidates who are already admitted to the Patent Bar are much more marketable than those who have not yet done so.”
For more information on IP law in Washington, D.C., contact Robyn Ginsberg.