Museum for Black Innovation and Entrepreneurship

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The Museum for Black Innovation and Entrepreneurship, MBIE, is a source of inspiration for creativity. Instead of having a single location, MBIE is a virtual program that provides free guidance and materials for displaying materials to exemplify and inspire Black innovation and entrepreneurship in many other locations throughout the country.

Our mission is to educate youth and other community members about Black innovation and entrepreneurship and to provide opportunities, where possible, to engage in innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurship. We envision a nationwide network of MBIE museum displays that highlight inspiring examples of Black innovators and entrepreneurs, located in public libraries and other community centers.

MBIE, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization, is based in Washington, DC and Birmingham, Alabama.

With consultation from the Institute for Intellectual Property and Social Justice (, we are undertaking IP For Innovation. IP For Innovation is a nationwide effort to raise public awareness of intellectual property, how to create it, protect it, commercialize it, and share it.

One example of IP For Innovation is the free IPFI Librarian's Handbook, which describes how librarians can assist patrons register copyrights for their works and then share them through electronic publishing. We are promoting use of this Handbook by prison librarians to empower those in detention to create, protect, and publish their works.

With consultation from the Birmingham Public Library, we are undertaking MBIE for Librarians, a free handbook that describes how a library can set up an MBIE exhibit highlighting Black innovation and entrepreneurship.

The Museum is also hosting the new Cooperative Curriculum website, a resource of materials for those interested in teaching about cooperatives, including papers on the special role cooperatives have played in Black history in the United States.

All of our work is completely voluntary, but we do have operating expenses, including domain name fees, web hosting fees, and fees associated with our business filings. Please show your support by joining us and making a contribution on our Membership page.

Take control of your intellectual property (IP):

If you are creative and want to learn more about how to protect your work, the free Creative Control workshop is just for you. The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is offering workshops around the country to mix creative people with intellectual property lawyers who provide free assistance. The workshop link is: Creative Control.

Other news:

Super interviews with innovators at Radio Cade! Listen especially to Black inventor Isaiah Oladeji, who, with Joe Sleppy, invented a wire-shaped supercapacitor.

Dr. Patricia Bath, "Just look at my work."

We are very thankful to the many anonymous donors who send ongoing support for the Museum through Network for Good and YourCause via corporate participants including AT&T and Facebook. As an all-volunteer effort, we very much appreciate funds that pay for non-personnel costs, such as educational materials development and dissemination. Although we do not know who you are individually, we are immensely grateful for your solidarity in our educational cause, and encourage you to contact us directly if you have suggestions for how we can be more effective.

Seven Black Inventors in the New York Times, 24 February 2019.

Fascinating New York Times obituary on Granville T. Woods here.

Short film on Super Soaker inventor Lonnie Johnson here.

Lateef Mtima explains IP Social Justice in this Authors Alliance interview.

Hear Museum Board Director Patricia Carter Sluby on NPR’s Market Place on 25 February 2014. Hear here!

“An entrepreneurship approach to achieving intellectual property social justice,” in a new law text, Intellectual Property, Entrepreneurship and Social Justice, From Swords to Ploughshares (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2015), edited by Lateef Mtima, Professor of Law at Howard University School of Law in Washington, DC. View short clips from our video ethnographic study in Alabama.

Please order from Amazon using the following link to donate one half of one percent of your purchase to the Museum. And many thanks for your support!

See this show on music copyright, featuring Lateef Mtima

There may be few other stories as unique or compelling as the Black experience in creating social utility during centuries of virtually total disenfranchisement, and emerging from that peculiar experience. The story of this history and experience, which includes both the Black community and the context in which it was and is situated, is the subject to be explored in this web site and in the Museum (see here for our statement, “What Is Black Innovation and Entrepreneurship?”.

Find out more about the Museum for Black Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Guidestar.