< HOME / news

Women in Innovation – reaching untapped audiences with inclusivity

June 21, 2021

Giulia Sirigu
Senior innovation and growth specialist


On 15th June, we hosted yet another monthly Women in Innovation event – this time we talked all about reaching untapped audiences with inclusivity which covered the following key points:

  • How to create more inclusive and well considered products and services considering intended users
  • How to improve your customer experience
  • Hear from different entrepreneurs’ experiences
  •  Connect with other women innovators and enlarge their network
  • Understand the support opportunities available for their business


  • Dr Giulia Sirigu, Senior Innovation & Growth Specialist - Innovate UK EDGE
  • Dr Patricia Gestoso, Head of Services


How to create inclusive products and services - Dr Patricia Gestoso, scientific services leader and an inclusion and ethics tech evangelist guided participants through a reflection on who is impacted by the experience business are creating. Patricia guided the audience through a set of provoking exercises that allowed delegates to reflect on their areas of improvement. The attendees were invited to reflect on their limiting beliefs and the change they wanted to make identifying who was impacted by their product and services. The exercises were developed using an assessment methodology  that enables tech developers, founders and products and service creators to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for the actual and potential negative impacts of their designs.


‍Innovate UK EDGE Support - Dr Giulia Sirigu walked attendees through the importance of diversity in innovation, as a mean to boost growth while creating more inclusive products and services – therefore resulting in a higher return on equity and greater proportion of revenue from innovation.

Giulia stressed the opportunity for companies doing innovation to receive bespoke support from  dedicated Innovate UK EDGE specialists able to help them to find the best way to accelerate their growth and look for untapped audiences.  


By definition, inclusive design is essentially the process of a design in which the service / product / environment is optimised to make it inclusive towards the end user. Often we see products on the market which aren’t inclusive – and this can be for many different reasons!


Inclusivity ranges from ethnicity and race, all the way through to disability and gender – we have seen on the news more recently about the lack of inclusive colouring when brands use the colour ‘nude’ whether it be for makeup, shoes, clothing – the list goes on! As one shade of nude, doesn’t fit all!


In May, the world celebrated ‘Global Accessibility Day’ and The World Economic Forum shared some useful information about inclusive design you can check HERE.

One of the most important statistics in this article states ‘Although 90% of companies claim to prioritise diversity, only 4% consider disability in those initiatives.’ The article goes on to talk about inclusive design and how business have helped their users, and could continue to do so – check out these changes that have been put in place by some of the biggest companies we know and love:


  •  Microsoft Teams makes lip-reading easier by blurring backgrounds to remove distractions on video calls.
  • Spotify changed the colour, text formatting and size of its famous green buttons to make the user-interface more accessible.
  • TikTok introduced automated closed captions, a feature that adds subtitles without requiring users to enter the text themselves.
  • Procter & Gamble created audio-described advertisement spots and the majority of Netflix media has audio-descriptive narration.
  • Apple launched new accessibility features, which include new background sounds function in support of neurodiversity to minimize external noise distractions and a new SignTime service that offers on-demand sign language interpreters for Apple Store and Apple Support customers. 


Sure – if you’re keen to hear more about Women in Innovation and our events, or more about Innovate UK EDGE and the support that we can provide then email: InnovateUKEDGE@inventya.com REF: Women in Innovation.


Join us at the Fund Her North ‘preparing for growth in a post-covid world’ on July 22 – register now: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/preparing-for-growth-in-a-post-covid-world-tickets-152876165727

June 22, 2021
← back to news
Thank you! We will be in touch shortly.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

More of our news

The Human Element: Balancing Technology and Empathy in a Hyperconnected World
In our hyperconnected world, technology has transformed the way we communicate and interact with each other. From smartphones and social media to video calls and virtual reality, we rely on technology to connect with others, access information, and streamline our tasks. While technology and its evolution have undoubtedly brought many benefits, it has also led to concerns about the erosion of the human element in our interactions.
May 18, 2023
Unlocking the Power of International Collaboration: How Working with Partners Abroad Can Benefit Your R&D Activities
It's no secret that we're living in a hyperconnected world, where challenges can feel overwhelming as we huddle behind our screens. However, collaboration is the key that unlocks the door to enduring solutions, and we've witnessed this first-hand during the COVID-era. Global communities united to contain the spread, develop vaccines, and establish effective treatments. This joint effort played a crucial role in restoring a semblance of order amidst the chaos.
May 11, 2023
What to Consider When Choosing Your Grant Writer – the Importance of the Human Touch
Over the past two decades of writing grant applications, I've experienced the transformation of government funding. When InnovateUK was still called the 'Technology Strategy Board,' many businesses were unaware of available grants, and some were hesitant, thinking that such non-repayable funding was too good to be true.
May 3, 2023
Navigating the Ethical Crossroads: Striking the Balance between Grant Compliance and Innovation
In a world where market disruption and system modernisation are the norm, grant-funded projects face the challenge of balancing compliance and innovation. On the one hand, strict regulations ensure ethical conduct and resource allocation, while on the other, innovation is essential for solving complex problems and driving progress.
April 19, 2023
Unlocking the Potential of Sustainable Technologies: How R&D Tax Credits Can Pave the Way
Unlock the potential of sustainable technologies and pave the way towards a greener future with R&D Tax Credits. Learn how this government incentive can help your business reduce costs, improve cash flow, and drive innovation for environmental sustainability.
April 3, 2023
Common mistakes to avoid when writing a grant proposal
Key to writing a good grant proposal is to be diligent, focused and persistent. By avoiding common mistakes like lack of clarity, unrealistic budgeting, and failure to meet the funder’s priorities, you can increase your chances of getting grant approvals. Carefully plan your proposal while adhering to the submission guidelines and stay true to your project vision to bring your project to life.
March 14, 2023