Tech for D&Iversity 2022

Recommended Event: 31/03/2022: Tech for D&Iversity 2022 | Tech London Advocates & Global Tech Advocates

Tech for D&Iversity 2022

Tech London Advocates and Global Tech Advocates are returning to Here East for TECH FOR D&IVERSITY 2022.

This hybrid event will ask whether the tech sector has made progress when it comes to diversity and inclusion, or whether tech companies have failed to address this ongoing challenge.

The event will include entrepreneurs, investors, tech leaders, campaigners and grassroots activists from across the UK and around the world.

The event will showcase the Tech London Advocates Working Groups driving change around D&I related issues in the UK – TLA Women in Tech, TLA Black Women in Tech, TLA LGBTQ+, TLA Asians in Tech, TLA Young Entrepreneurs, TLA Tech for disability.

The full speaker list will be confirmed. Current speakers include:

  • Deanna Patterson, Workday Professional Services EMEA, Programme Manager, OneSource Virtual
  • Debbie Forster, CEO, Tech Talent Charter
  • Dr Grace Lordan, Founding Director, The Inclusion Initiative (London School of Economics)
  • Esther O’Callaghan, Hundo
  • Flavilla Fongang, Founder, 3 Colours Rule
  • Garry Bernstein, Tech Scotland Advocates
  • Iain Anderson, UK Government’s LBGTQ+ Champion
  • Jacqueline de Rojas CBE, President, techUK
  • Jeanette Carlsson, Tech Nordic Advocates
  • Jonathan Brown, GLA
  • Kate Marshall, Global Technical Ambassador Lead, IBM & GTA Quantum
  • KC Goundiam, Tech Canada Advocates
  • Lannie Medina, Tech Bay Area Advocates
  • Nikita Thakrar, Co-Founder & CEO, Included.VC
  • Oli Barrett MBE, Event MC
  • Priya Guha MBE, Venture Partner, Merian Ventures
  • Russ Shaw CBE, Founder, Tech London Advocates & Global Tech Advocates
  • Sarah Luxford, Founder, TLA WiT
  • Sarah Turner, Co-Founder & CEO, Angel Academe
  • Suki Fuller, TLA WiT
  • Teresa Martin, Tech Spain Advocates
  • Vanessa Vallely OBE, Managing Director, WeAreTechWomen

The event will be hosted online on the TLA YouTube channel. Restrictions permitting, we will be hosting a limited in-person audience at Here East. If you would be interested in attending in-person, please email [email protected]

One Tech World Virtual Conference 2022

01 APRIL 2022

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Russ Shaw CBE

HeForShe: Russ Shaw CBE | Founder, Tech London Advocates & Global Tech Advocates

Russ Shaw CBE

Russ Shaw CBE is the founder of Tech London Advocates and Global Tech Advocates.

He originally founded Tech London Advocates in 2013 to ensure an independent voice of the technology community was heard, but with a focus on the private sector. Since then he has been championing London as a global tech hub and campaigning to address some of the biggest challenges facing tech companies in the UK. Global Tech Advocates, founded in 2015, is now present in 17 hubs around the globe, with over 12,000 members. In 2019 Russ launched the inaugural GTA Festival, taking place in China and bringing the international network together for the first time. Russ was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours List 2021 for services to technology and to business in London. He is a founding partner of London Tech Week, a London Tech Ambassador for the Mayor of London and Advisory Board member for Founders4Schools and the Government’s Digital Skills Partnership. In 2019, Russ was recognised as a ‘Tech Titan’ in the Evening Standard’s Progress 1000 list of London’s most influential people.

Russ is part of the visionary line-up speaking at Globalization Partners’ PANGEO Conference which is taking place October 20-22 and is designed to equip companies with new ideas, skills, and best practices to thrive in the new world of global remote work. Learn more about the event here.

Tell us a bit about yourself, background and your current role

I’m the founder of Tech London Advocates (TLA) and Global Tech Advocates (GTA). TLA was founded in 2013 and is now a network of 50+ working groups, with the goal of championing London as a global tech hub and campaigning to address some of the biggest challenges facing tech in the UK and GTA was established two years later and has grown to now comprise 22 hubs made up of more than 20,000 members and spanning five continents. The tech sector and London has been good to me – my previous roles include VP & General Manager at Skype and Global Innovation Director at Telefonica – and so I want to give something back.

Did you ever sit down and plan your career?

In the early stages, I absolutely planned my career. I thought carefully about what I wanted to study and where I wanted to get certain experiences. I always had the goal of running a business as CEO or Managing Director. That was in my 20s and 30s. Then in my 40s, I focused less on gaining experience with brands and companies and instead thought more about the people I wanted to work with. I had the experience – what I needed then was to be surrounded by people who I could learn from and who inspired me.

Have you faced any challenges along the way?

I faced challenges on a daily basis in my professional career – particularly early on. I was asked to do certain things, or sometimes treated in ways that I didn’t agree with, or that made me feel comfortable. Later on, the main challenge became balancing work experience with family life. My wife was diagnosed with leukemia, and caring for her along with my other commitments certainly took its toll. But life isn’t about staying in your comfort zone – if I had never been challenged, I certainly wouldn’t have built the resilience needed to be successful.

What has been your biggest achievement to date?

The achievement I’m most proud of is founding TLA and GTA. I’ve had to amalgamate all the various skills I’ve used throughout my career – campaigning, using my marketing background to position London as a global hub, expanding an organisation (which I experienced while working for Skype in its early days). Most importantly, I’m proud of the ethos behind the networks – people helping each other for the greater good. TLA in particular has fostered a real spirit of collaboration, ensuring that London’s tech ecosystem remains open for business.

What one thing do you believe has been a major factor in you achieving success? 

I wouldn’t say there has been one single factor, but I think the combination of determination, self-belief and collaboration are essential characteristics to achieve a vision. I’ve always been determined to make a difference and had conviction in whatever I was doing. Those convictions have certainly been tested along the way – but I couldn’t have overcome the obstacles I’ve faced without collaborating with others to achieve something bigger.

How do you feel about mentoring? Have you mentored anyone or are you someone’s mentee?

I think it’s crucial that everyone has access to a mentor and that people should be encouraged to take on mentoring roles. I have mentored many people over the years and although I’m no longer anyone’s mentee, I still work with several advisors who are always there to help and support me in my decisions.

What can businesses/government/allies do to help diversity and inclusion?

Both businesses and governments need to have diversity and inclusion at the heart of everything they do. CEOs, leaders and boards need to walk the talk and make this a top priority – ultimately it starts at the top with a belief that these issues are fundamentally important to the collective success. Crucially, those at the top need to be willing to acknowledge when they get things wrong – all of us are constantly learning how we can best help.

Why do you think it’s important for men to support gender equality in the workplace?

Men have a vital role to play in enabling women to achieve their goals and ambitions – alas, we are still primarily a male-dominated society. For this reason, men are key to enabling change to happen. Many positions of authority – CEOs, government leaders, investors – are held by men and it is therefore up to men to own this issue. If we don’t play our part, then we cannot say to women around the world that we are serious about gender equality in the workplace.

If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self what would it be?

Have more confidence in your own beliefs! Don’t be afraid to get things wrong or take risks. I’m very proud of my three sons, who work in three very different industries in careers they are passionate about. When I was younger, I went straight into the corporate world after studying, but I now know that to be successful you have to really love what you’re doing. If my younger self had been aware of that, some of the decisions I made might have been a little different.

What is your next challenge and what are you hoping to achieve in the future?

Worldwide growth and domination with Global Tech Advocates (said with a smile)! I want to expand the global network and help the broader population understand that the digital and tech sectors can be their friend. Tech is an important place for anyone’s career and has the potential to be a real force for good – but it is in desperate need of brilliant talent to support the growth and expansion.

Broadly, I want to make tech more accessible to all however I can. I want to continue to lead this amazing Advocates community in driving the message around the world that tech can help with some of the world’s biggest challenges and that we must keep striving to innovate.

Discover more about the PANGEO Conference

PANGEO is Globalization Partners’ annual conference designed to equip companies with the ideas, skills, and best practices to thrive in the new world of global remote work.

PANGEO derives its name from the 300-million-year-old supercontinent, Pangea, when the earth’s landmasses were united as one. Today, the world has transformed itself — reunited once again in what we call PANGEO — a new world of opportunities without boundaries, as post-pandemic workforces move to remote and hybrid models putting the world’s workforce on one platform.

The conference will bring together visionaries from around the world, who will discuss key trends, strategies, and personal experiences — designed to help you build fast and agile remote teams. During this free, three-day virtual event, attendees will get a chance to hear from experts on how to build efficient, high-performing global remote teams, how to create integrated employee experiences, and why both compliance and speed are critical for long-term success in 2021 and beyond.


Women In London Tech | Tech London Advocates (TLA)

  • TLA-Logo-staplineRaise awareness of the impact of diversity on high performance
  • Create and execute on measurable actions to encourage diversity whilst also demonstrating a business value
  • Unite the broader gender agenda alongside the many existing groups as one voice to the London community and beyond
About Tech London Advocates (TLA)

Tech London Advocates (TLA) is an advocacy group that aims to support technology start-ups in finding new investment, new talent and achieving high growth.

The private sector led network seeks to encourage the investment of both capital and talent in tech start-ups from FTSE businesses and major international companies, building partnerships between the start-up community in London, and investors and influencers worldwide.

TLA believes that there is significant and growing interest from large corporates based in the UK to get further involved in London’s burgeoning tech start-up sector. The group will play a key role in promoting London’s emerging technology and digital sector as a defining high-growth area for the city and broader UK economy.

TLA will strive to accelerate the necessary business conditions to advance start-up growth, support later stage businesses and enable technology innovation to rapidly reach its marketplace. This in turn will enhance investment conditions for larger businesses, enabling them to benefit from from the culture of innovation embodied by London’s tech entrepreneurs.

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