Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
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Cultivating Innovation: Qualcomm's Diversity-driven Workshops Empower Inventors with TIPA Program


Cultivating Innovation: Qualcomm's Diversity-driven Workshops Empower Inventors with TIPA Program
For over three decades, we have stood as a dedicated ally to nations worldwide, championing policies that foster innovation, drive technological progress, and cultivate business-friendly atmospheres on a global scale. With each advancement in wireless connectivity, our aim is to forge collective success through collaboration with legislators and regulators, opening new avenues for local industries and communities.
Our approach to public policy revolves around four fundamental principles:
  • Engagement: We actively participate in policy dialogues with governments, organizations, and industries worldwide, advocating for measures that spur innovation while safeguarding and nurturing novel concepts in connectivity. We are steadfast in aiding policymakers across all tiers of governance in comprehending our business model and our role as facilitators of ecosystems. 
  • Ethical Governance: Adhering to all relevant laws and regulations concerning political contributions and expenditures, we ensure that our contributions undergo scrutiny from senior management and oversight by our Board of Directors' Governance Committee.
  • Transparency: We uphold transparency by publicly disclosing all political contributions made by our Company and our Political Action Committee to the Federal Elections Commission. Additionally, we strictly adhere to the legal obligations stipulated by the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and similar statutes globally. 
  • Policy Guidance: Vigilantly monitoring and assessing developments impacting the realm of connectivity, we focus on key public policy domains such as 5G, innovation and intellectual property (IP), spectrum allocation, privacy, immigration, taxation, and environmental sustainability. Our stance on these issues is detailed on our public policy website.
Our standpoint on crucial public policy matters includes:
  • 5G: Recognizing 5G as a unified connectivity framework poised to revolutionize industries, generate employment opportunities, and drive an estimated $13.1 trillion in global sales activity by 2035, we advocate for the continued adoption of policies conducive to a comprehensive 5G rollout. 
  • Innovation and IP: Acknowledging invention, innovation, and IP protection as fundamental drivers of economic growth and competitiveness, we emphasize the importance of robust patent systems and stringent global IP protection. 
  • Spectrum Allocation: Acknowledging the critical role of adequate and suitable radio spectrum in realizing the benefits of wireless connectivity, we advocate for responsible freeing of new spectrum to meet consumer and business demands.
  • Privacy: We prioritize cultivating consumer trust through robust security and privacy practices, recognizing these as essential for enhancing the adoption and personalization of wireless technology offerings. 
  • mmigration: Acknowledging the indispensable contribution of highly skilled talent, particularly in mathematics, engineering, and sciences, to our Company's success and global technological innovation, we advocate for policies supporting their integration. 
  • Taxation: We advocate for policies that incentivize innovation and empower American technology firms to compete effectively in the global marketplace. 
  • Environmental Sustainability: Recognizing our technologies, business model, and role as a technology catalyst can aid communities, governments, and stakeholders in transitioning towards a more sustainable future, we champion initiatives that promote environmental sustainability.
Our stance on climate change and environmental sustainability, outlined in our 2023 publication, is available on our public policy webpage. We firmly believe that prioritizing environmental sustainability is crucial for society. Conserving and safeguarding natural resources and global ecosystems bring substantial social and environmental advantages for both current and future generations. Achieving these benefits necessitates collaborative action and leadership from corporate entities.
Our Global Tax Strategy underscores our commitment to being a responsible and transparent corporate entity. Our tax approach aligns with our Code of Business Conduct (CoBC) and Code of Ethics, emphasizing compliance with relevant tax laws, maximizing shareholder value, and providing transparent tax reporting and disclosures. Additionally, we endeavor to fulfill tax obligations on profits generated within each jurisdiction.
"We are dedicated to assisting policymakers at all levels in understanding our business model and our role as an enabler of ecosystems."
Executing our business strategy relies on specialized engineering and other talent, given our substantial reliance on technological advancements and product innovations for revenue. To attract top talent, we must have the ability to recruit top engineers, irrespective of their nationality. However, existing immigration laws, compounded by intense competition within our industry, pose challenges in recruiting and retaining highly skilled foreign nationals, further shrinking the talent pool.
We actively engage in public policy endeavors to advocate for regulations that align with current economic realities. Our Government Affairs team participates in various advocacy initiatives aimed at shaping immigration laws to support our Company's capacity to develop cutting-edge technologies and foster innovation-driven economic growth globally. These advocacy efforts, particularly concerning immigration laws and the recruitment of a diverse global workforce, are typically executed through collaborations with trade associations and diverse coalitions of employers. For more insights into our approach to managing a diverse, highly skilled workforce, please refer to our SASB Index.
Promoting a more inclusive patent ecosystem remains a core belief for us. We firmly advocate for a U.S. patent system that mirrors the diversity of our nation, recognizing that diversifying inventors and patent holders can spur job creation, bolster the national economy, narrow wage and wealth disparities, and sustain the U.S.'s position as a global innovation leader. Internally and externally, we are actively working to create equitable opportunities for all.
Last year, in partnership with Invent Together, we launched The Inventor’s Patent Academy (TIPA), a free, mobile-friendly course designed to guide inventors through the patenting process. This e-learning course equips innovators with the knowledge needed to protect their inventions through patenting, offering practical advice for overcoming obstacles and navigating the system. It also shares inspiring stories of inventors overcoming challenges and bringing their ideas to fruition, providing a solid understanding of patent law and the patent filing process.
Since its inception, TIPA has reached nearly 1,400 students, with a significant portion coming from historically underrepresented minority (URM) backgrounds and over 40% being women, with 70% of them being women of color. The United States Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO’s) First-Time Filer Expedited Examination Pilot Program recognizes TIPA as a valuable learning resource. Students from various sectors, including government, higher education, startups, accelerators, private corporations, and individual inventors, have benefited from the program. We are proud of this impactful initiative and remain committed to expanding outreach to our target audiences as we enroll more students.
At Qualcomm, we tapped into our diverse employee resources, focusing on fostering innovation through initiatives like our "Cultivating Innovation" workshop series. Developed in collaboration with our IP Department, Government Affairs, and employee networks, these workshops aimed to enhance diversity in innovation within our company. As part of this series, we hosted 16 events, including a workshop on TIPA (The Inventor’s Patent Academy). Feedback from participants indicated that over 90% found the course material addressing systemic barriers to patenting and patent law to be valuable and pertinent. Given this positive response and our sizable engineering workforce, we are exploring options to expand the course's availability across the company.
We express gratitude for the support in our recruitment efforts provided by partner organizations such as AnitaB.org, the Society of Women Engineers, and the Native American Intellectual Property Enterprise Council, all part of our collaboration with Invent Together. Additionally, we appreciate the recognition from the USPTO, which has featured the TIPA program as a learning resource for its new First-Time Filer Expedited Examination Pilot Program on its website.
Over the past year, we have made enhancements and updates to the online course content based on user feedback. These improvements include an enhanced smartphone experience, updated voice narration, learning capsules, improved accessibility features, and additional inventor resources, such as information on the patent pro-bono program. These enhancements align with our company's commitment to making the inventing and patenting process more accessible for everyone. We firmly believe that empowering inventors with robust patent rights enables them to drive positive change for the benefit of society as a whole.