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(Photo: Getty images/Talishka)

Indigenous and Local Community Women Entrepreneurship Program

The WIPO Training, Mentoring and Matchmaking Program on Intellectual Property for Women Entrepreneurs from Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities aims to encourage women entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity related to traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions by strengthening the capacity of indigenous and local community women entrepreneurs to make strategic and effective use of intellectual property tools in support of their entrepreneurial activities.

The Program provides participants the opportunity to:

  • build capacity in intellectual property and acquire the skills necessary for an effective use of the intellectual property system, including in the digital economy;
  • acquire basic knowledge of related fields useful in an entrepreneurial context, such as business modelling, marketing and digital storytelling;
  • benefit from the support of a mentor to further develop and implement projects and businesses based on traditional knowledge and/or traditional cultural expressions that have an intellectual property component; and
  • meet amongst Program participants, share and learn from each other's experiences, but also meet potential partners who can provide support with the implementation of the intellectual property components of their projects and businesses.

Video: A Modern Take on Traditional Cloth:  Meet Senegalese Fashion Designer Satitia Gomis

Video: Presenting the Indigenous and Local Community Women Entrepreneurship Program

Meet our participants

Program structure

The Program has a practical approach, consisting of two phases: 

(Photo: WIPO/Berrod)

Training phase

The training phase consists of a practical workshop that includes a mixture of short presentations, case studies and group work.

During the training phase, participants acquire basic knowledge of the main principles, systems and tools of the intellectual property system as they relate to traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions.

The practical workshop also provides the opportunity for participants to network and share experiences with other indigenous and local community women entrepreneurs from around the world to further develop their projects and businesses.

(Photo: WIPO/Berrod)

Mentoring and matchmaking phase

During the mentoring and matchmaking phase, participants are expected to implement the intellectual property components of their projects and businesses.

Mentors are assigned to individual participants to provide guidance and support in the implementation of the intellectual property components of the participants’ projects and businesses.

As needed, WIPO facilitates additional assistance through its Program Partners who bring deep and valuable experiences to the table.

Throughout this phase, participants can benefit from several follow-up activities, including booster sessions and clinics.