Taking Risks: Why We Need More Women in Technology and What to Do About It

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There’s no question that we want more women creating technology. Women comprise only 18 percent of Computer Science & Engineering graduates, and about 21 percent of the technical workforce. The Anita Borg Institute (ABI) works with women technologists and organizations that have a large technical workforce, providing them with connection, inspiration and guidance. This talk provides an overview of the landscape of women technologists’ participation today, and discusses what we can do to change the culture both as individuals and within organizations. Dr. Whitney draws on her experience from ABI’s Grace Hopper Conference, the BRAID initiative’s work involving 15 academic institutions, her work with hundreds of technology companies, and her own journey.

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Dr. Telle Whitney joined the Anita Borg Institute in 2002 and has led ABI’s substantial growth in size and impact. She held senior technical management positions with Malleable Technologies and Actel Corporation, and co-founded the annual Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference. She has received ACM’s Distinguished Service award, the Computing Research Association’s A. Nico Habermann Award, and an honorary degree from CMU, among other awards. Dr. Whitney earned her Ph.D. at Caltech and her bachelor’s degree at the University of Utah, both in Computer Science.