Royal Holloway Wisdom

Royal Holloway University of London - Women in the Security Domain and/or Mathematics

Royal Holloway Wisdom

Wisdom was set up in 2016 in the School of Mathematics and Information Security at Royal Holloway to try to address the lack of diversity in these fields.

Our main aim is to promote diversity within our department, by creating a group of like minded people who all support this mission. We also aim to encourage more women to study in these fields, by fostering a community that is supportive of women. We highlight areas where women feel underrepresented or improvements could be made, and then ensure that school management is fully engaged in resolving these issues.

We have meetings every two months, to which the whole department is invited. In these meetings we organise our current projects, and there is a discussion on a topic related to diversity. Previous topics include the “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber” memo. We also have an organising committee meeting every other month.

In May 2017 Wisdom co-hosted an event with HutZero titled ‘Driving Innovation through Diversity’. With around 40 attendees, the event was focused on discussing how organisations can help promote diversity in the Cyber Security sector. We deliberately designed the event to be interactive, with a ‘workshop’ style as opposed to a traditional speaker/audience setup. This allowed for a good flow of conversation, to enable attendees to share their thoughts, ideas, and network.

Wisdom have also organised the London Universities Women in Stem Day in June 2017, with around 50 attendees. This event provided a forum for discussion between the universities in London about promoting diversity in STEM. The day ended with a discussion panel and networking. Feedback from the event included: "Great speakers, passionate about both their work and committed to gender equality. It was nice to see a different range of seniority (PhD student to head of department) as well as from different backgrounds (academia vs industry)."

We organised a Winter Networking Event, where speakers focused on revealing their own experiences about diversity. Attendees found this helpful, and this fostered good discussion in the networking afterwards. We held an anniversary brunch on the first birthday of Wisdom, to celebrate our achievements. These achievements have been recognised by the university who awarded the group an 'Enhancing Fairness Award'. On the more social side of Wisdom, we hold informal lunches with the Master's students from Royal Holloway on a termly basis. Our other social events include films nights, where we watch a diversity-themed film. These events allow us to think about issues in a more informal setting, where some of our members feel more comfortable to express themselves.

Wisdom recently ran the 11 session Voice & Influence programme for its members. This programme, developed by the Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford, offers both theoretical and practical discussions and solutions to issues women face in the work place. This allowed for weekly discussions and also advice applicable to individuals. It has also helped us, as a group, look at what our university might do better. An example of this would be a better defined maternity policy.

One of our main initiatives, was to give two undergraduate students based in South Africa the chance to visit Royal Holloway to complete short projects. These projects were under the supervision of Professor Kenny Paterson who, along with the HOPE foundation, and an EPSRC grant, funded the visit. Although we encountered difficulties with the visas of both students, we were still able to host one of the students for a shorter period of time. This allowed her to gain some exposure to the world of research.

When founding the group we encountered obstacles including convincing management that diversity is everybody's problem, and of the necessity of Wisdom. We also needed to convince the department that Wisdom is a group for all, and source funding. We were fortunate last year to receive an EPSRC grant, and we hope our annual Wisdom survey will help us reach out to the whole department.
We are proud at how much our network has expanded in our first year, both internally and externally via social media and our regularly updated blog. Our meetings are well attended, by both women and men, with up to 30 regular members. We hope that these meeting are helping to raise the issue of diversity across the entire department, with both staff and students attending.

Overall, we are overwhelmed with the progress Wisdom has made in its first year. we are determined to double down in our efforts, and make our second year even better.


BCSWomen

BCSWomen

BCSWomen

BCSWomen is a Specialist Group of the BCS, The British Chartered Institute for IT. It is a diverse, UK-centred and yet global network to encourage women in to technology, by running a variety of events that are designed to improve women’s technology and personal skills and to provide networking opportunities.

We estimate that since its inception, by Dr Sue Black OBE in 2001, BCSWomen has helped over 10,000 women by providing them with hands-on coding, technology awareness and personal skill seminars, workshops and mentoring.

Our committee of volunteers, organises around 25 events a year. Some of the highlights include but are not limited to the following:

1- This year, recognising the importance of skills in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Sarah Burnett, the chair of BCSWomen, launched the AI Accelerator program. This is a series of free AI-focused webinars, seminars and workshops by experts, aimed at getting more women into the field of AI. The program is on target to reach 500 women by the end of the year.
2- Every year, we organise the Undergraduate Lovelace Colloquium for undergraduate women in computing, a one-day conference which started in Leeds in 2008 and now moves around the UK. The colloquium is for U.K. university women students studying Computing and related subjects. It was started by Dr Hannah Dee, who continues to play a key role in its organisation every year.
3- Many BCSWomen also contribute to the annual London Hopper Colloquium, which showcases exciting work of women in computing research and enables new PhD researchers to meet with each other as well as with senior women computer scientists. Grace Hopper was a pioneering American computer scientist.
4- BCSWomen organises other events for women. Highlights from 2017 to date include:

• Several AppInventor and other coding workshops
• Seminars on technologies such as blockchain and robotics
• Gender issues such as closing the pay gap
• A forthcoming event in October will be on how to get your voice heard, helping women get more confident at work

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DevelopHer

DevelopHer

DevelopHer

DevelopHer are a non-profit community dedicated to bringing women together to drive opportunities, developer confidence and create a network of support through events, networking and learning. DevelopHer's aim is to developher careers, develop confidence and develop change for women in tech.

We aim to develop careers by supporting those aiming to build and progress their careers in technology, digital and entrepreneurship. We also aim to develop confidence in women, where we strive to proactively develop the skills, self-belief and discovery of learning in our community via monthly events, annual mentoring programmes, regular workshops and inspirational advice. Finally we aim to develop change – we want to create an open and friendly community regardless of gender; to bring together and grow the common goal of diversity and female communities across countries and disciplines; putting into practice how we can help and influence each other.

As part of our commitment, we aim to work with other diversity and tech groups with similar values. As we continue to work with Geek Girl Meetup, Blooming Founders, Women Who Code, SyncDevelopHER, WOWtalks, Unbound and StartHer – our journey begins with collaboration being at the heart of what we do, in order to provide you the opportunities our community needs. We truly believe that together we are better.

The community has both a signifcant reach online and a high level of engagement from our community. The community grew organically over a long period of time, with it being a self selecting community focused around London, women and interest in technology. In total we see roughly +4,000 newsletter community members, +12,000 twitter followers, +1,400 Facebook group members, +500 Facebook page likes and +500 Instagram followers. As a network, we continuously get feedback that a community we proivde a real, authentic and supportive environment that is encouraging success in others, where women feel they can open up to each other.

The network is run entirely by a team of volunteers who are passionate about diversity and making a difference. In total, the DevelopHer board team consists of 12 members, who work relentlessly in their spare time to provide opportunities for their community. As a result, this is a challenge especially with the strong growth in the network and the small resources of dedicated members who work on the network outside of their full time careers. As a result, this has led the DevelopHer team to focus only on events that enable their community to walk away with a learning. Whether this be a piece of advice or an action, DevelopHer tailors their events to focus on learning based opportunities.

A highlight of successful events ran by DevelopHer include inviting a hundred members of their community to 10 Downing street for a speed mentoring and networking event in both 2015 and 2016. This provided our community not only an opportunity to attend an empowering event, but to make real connections with mentors that will provide personal advice that mentees could put into context. These large scale mentoring events, utilized the efforts and good will of our dedicated mentors to help those looking to seek advice on their career, business or personal skills.

The DevelopHer team also launched a flagship 6 month mentoring programme for 15 selected mentees, to endeavor a journey so they can develop themselves and progress their careers. Over the course of the programme, 60% of the mentees saw a great improvement in their negotiation skills which led half of them achieving a promotion and half of the others starting their own business. 91% of the mentees reported their presentation skills had greatly improved and 70% of the mentees are now totally at ease with networking.

The DevelopHer community also provides a strong online community, for those who are unable to attend the event to also gain online inspiration and advice. DevelopHer works on monthly blogposts on advice from their ambassadors and mentors on key challenging topics our community face such as negotiation or changing careers. This is also leveraged through our social handles, and sharing short snippets of advice and information where we can, to provide our community the learning opportunities they need to develop themselves.

Through the passion of the DevelopHer team but also the commitment of our community, the network always see strong attendance of events and engagement online – that helps provide opportunities and advancements to our members.


IBM Hursley Women in Technology

IBM Hursley Women in Technology

IBM Hursley Women in Technology

The IBM Hursley Women in Technology group has sparked a number of initiatives and our enthusiastic members have worked tirelessly to encourage women to start and stay in technical careers. Some examples include the following:

'Women in Technology Day' events are hosted twice a year for local university female students, to raise awareness of career paths in technology and encourage them to apply for placements at IBM.

The annual 'Patent Group Incubator Program' was originally aimed at improving female patenting numbers but soon expanded to include men as well. Success is evident with over 400 patent submissions from over 200 PGIP inventors to date.

The 'Hursley MentorPlace' program started as a mentoring and activities program for local school age girls to gain insight into the variety of STEM career opportunities. This has been superceded by the ThinkIT program.

The 'Developing Your Technical Career' program is run twice a year, designed to encourage women to remain on technical career paths by inviting upcoming female technical leaders to identify their career aspirations and to provide networking and mentoring opportunities.

'Career Clinics' are quarterly lunchtime webinars with guest speakers presenting on a variety of topics, such as Unconscious Bias, Master Inventors, Careers, etc. Previously, we ran Lunch 'n Learn's every month on topics like Role Models, Promotions, Web design, Diversity and Communication.

'International Women's Day' is often celebrated at Hursley, with a poster event to raise awareness of these events and other topics such as Gender Diversity, Taking the Stage and Flexible Working.

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SheCanCode

SheCanCode

SheCanCode

We are empowering women to enter and remain in tech.

Our network supports women in tech by:

1. Being the go-to women in tech blog. We have more than 30 content contributors globally that write commissioned articles to support women along their journeys in tech. Our blogs get on average 1,000+ views p/article.
2. We do personal 1-to-1 free career consultancy with women that request it in our network. We've advised more than 200 women personally on personal branding, career options, women networks to join, events to attend, courses to upskill and companies to consider working for.
3. We run events that host on average 90 people. Our events attempt to focus on technology, and be representative of women and minorities. E.g. MusicTech event saw 5 leading musictech founders and senior employees come together to discuss the importance of diversity in music tech, the wins, and the challenges the industry are facing. Other events are often informal to get women in tech talking about their careers, and we offer support. We also curate and advertise events from our ecosystem partners to enable women to find the best events to attend, regardless of whether we host them or not.
4. We consult with tech companies on diversity hiring and policies. We have spoken to more than 150 companies about what we're doing, given them 'low-hanging fruits' on how to increase the number of women in their firm and retain them; and we are currently building a product to help them further.
5. We are constantly researching women in tech, from academic journal articles to interviews and stories - we aim to uncover what women really want and how we can shape the tech industry and change perceptions to get there.
6. We have interviewed role models in tech and share their stories with our community.
7. We work with remote engineers who are driven by our value-proposition to build tools to solve problems for women in tech.

Achievements:

- More than 30 companies supporting our development and growth
- Speaker at TechConnect 2016, 2017 (Virgin Media's 2,000 person annual tech event)
- Speaker at Diversity in Technology, London 2017
- Speaker at SheHive, by SheLeadsAfrica 2017 (upcoming)

What makes us different?

As opposed to just being a network, we're building tools based on the data, knowledge and stories we've analysed to empower women and their careers in technology. We collaborate extensively with the broader ecosystem to ensure that we are giving women the full picture.. We have a remote team of more than 50 people globally that work to make this a success and as powerful as it can be.

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