WASHINGTON, March 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- "I can't be the only female of color working at this level. That can't be right!" says Hannah Beachler, winner of the 2019 Oscar for Production Design. Beachler has dreamed up innovative visuals for productions such as Black Panther, Creed, and Moonlight, and is the first African-American to win an Oscar in that category. Beachler has repeatedly expressed that lack of diversity within her industry is due to lack of opportunities and low awareness amongst minority groups. Diversity and inclusion within technology and innovation are not new issues. Companies like Disney, Johnson & Johnson, and Mastercard are creating inclusion advocacy initiatives as part of their diversity advocacy. Federal agencies also are now confronting these issues with greater force.
Federal agencies are offering an unprecedented $130 billion in resources to encourage innovation and tech transfer agreements. The technology transfer process allows citizens to use existing federal resources and research to create new products and services. These agreements support dreamers, business owners, and innovators of all skill sets and experience levels. Two-thirds of game changing technologies in the past 50 years—smartphones, autonomous vehicles, personalized medicine, and GPS—were made possible through tech transfer agreements, but these partnerships seldom included minorities.
Many minority innovators are unaware of these resources and how to use them to create jobs and build wealth. To remedy that, the U.S. Department of Commerce's Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) launched a 5-city tour to increase awareness of Federal laboratory opportunities among minority business enterprises. The 2019 MBDA InVision Tour began in Atlanta, and includes Houston, Oakland, New York City, and Detroit. Registration is now open for the Houston, TX stop of The InVision Tour, on March 21-22, 2019 at the TMC Innovation Institute. This tour will foster more innovation opportunities among minorities.
About the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)
MBDA, www.mbda.gov, is the only Federal agency solely dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of U.S. minority-owned businesses through mobilization and advancement of public- and private-sector programs, policy, and research. We provide greater access to capital, contracts, and markets, and better equip minority-owned firms to create jobs, build scale and capacity, increase revenues, and expand regionally, nationally, and internationally.
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SOURCE Minority Business Development Agency