Trailblazing Female Innovators You Should Know
The world as you know it simply wouldn’t be what it is today without women. Men are often thrust in the spotlight for their innovative and out-of-the-box thinking, but just as many women have contributed in both big and small ways to make your life comfortable and easy to navigate. Here are just a few of the fabulous women innovators who have helped shaped the world you live in today and continue to make the world a better place to live.
Kristina Tsvetanova may not be a household name, but for more than a quarter of a billion people worldwide with visual impairment, she’s made their world a better place.
The world has become increasingly digital. It seems as if almost every minute of everyday technology is used to communicate and navigate the world around us. But for those that are visually impaired, it can feel a bit like they’re excluded from all these technological innovations. Well, until BLITAB was created.
Tsvetanova’s BLITAB is a Braille computer tablet. It helps those who are partially sighted and blind to use tablet technology by using disruptive actuating technology to create text and graphics that are tactile. It’s an amazing innovation!
Kristina was inspired to create this product after she saw the struggles of a friend at university who was visually impaired. Her friend was having difficulty following courses online, so she decided to do something about it.
One of the most amazing things about BLITAB is that it’s accessible for many people with a cost less than $500 US dollars. That’s less than the cost of an iPad and a small price to pay for opening up the digital world to the visually impaired.
Have you ever thought about how much food goes to waste every single day? And how much that adds up to each year? In the UK, 1.9 million tonnes of food are wasted each year. Full Harvest, a company headed by Christine Moseley out of San Francisco, recognised this worldwide problem and decided to do what she could about it.
Christine saw a place in the market for ‘ugly’ food. You know, the imperfect produce that many people, including those in the food and beverage industry, would normally give a pass to. Full Harvest connected that not-so-pretty produce with buyers, helping to increase the yield and profit of growers. Christine’s global food brand is now working on creating food products out of rescued produce to do her part in the fight against not only wasted food but climate change, too.
What if you could literally conjure food from thin air? That would go a long way in helping to ensure that people across the world were able to get the food they need to survive – and it’s something Lisa Dyson is working on.
Inspired by carbon dioxide recycling work done by the U.S. space agency NASA, Dyson is working on a process she says is similar to making yoghurt or beer, except the air is combined with nutrients, renewable energy, and microorganisms to create ‘air protein’ that is then combined with other ingredients to make food.
Her company is fittingly called Air Protein, and its aim is to create an alternative meat product from air to sell worldwide. She is also working on finding a way to make plastic biodegradable, create sustainable feed for fish farms, and nutrify soil for agriculture. Now that’s innovation!
Natural disasters are on the rise across the world, intensifying not just in frequency, but severity too. Nicole Hu has started a company called One Concern. Their mission is to use data science and artificial intelligence to make the world a safer place. The data they provide is being used by governments to create evacuation plans for natural disasters, project the damage cities may suffer from disasters, and help them know which buildings in which cities need to be reinforced to survive earthquakes and floods.
She says her mission is to save livelihoods as well as lives – and it’s working.
At Protected Species, we’re no strangers to innovation. The company was founded in 2014 to bring practical, functional, and fashionable outerwear to women – but that’s not all. Anne and Rebecca, founders of Protected Species, also want to deliver versatile and sleek clothing in an ethical way. They work with other female entrepreneurs in the Far East to manufacture the fabric for their garments, and seek to empower women in the communities they invest in.
In addition, the Protected Species fabric mill has pioneered waterproof fabrics that are created in an environmentally sound way. Only eco-friendly elements are used to produce Protected Species’ versatile clothing, such as the ladies’ rain mac or signature women’s waterproof parka.
Image: Rebecca co-founder of protected species, testing a new waterproof ladies jacket to add to their existing collection
The world is constantly changing, but it’s up to everyone to make sure it’s changing in a positive direction. These women are doing their part to help improve the environment, health and longevity of their fellow humans. Hopefully, it can inspire you to tackle a project that could help in your local community – and maybe even the world.