Women are missing from all aspects of the hi-tech industry, so much so there is an annual European government run day specifically designed to combat this. The day is called ‘Girls in ICT day,’ and this year it will be held on April 24th. It is run by ITU (International Telecommunication Union), the United Nations specialized agency for information & communication technologies, and the purpose of the day is to encourage and empower women to pursue careers within the tech industry. It consists of around 560 programs including various types of activities such as ‘open days,’ career days at local schools, lectures from women within the industry, and mentoring or shadowing programs. Last year’s Girls in ICT day involved around 40,000 females participating in 1,500 events in 121 countries worldwide. Many companies have gotten involved in promoting the project and Cisco even created a video for it (found below.)
Now, though this is great and we undoubtedly celebrate any move towards equality within the workplace, we still feel this falls a little short. It is no secret that the world of hi-tech is almost entirely shifting to the cloud, and as far as we can see, there is no part of the Girls in ICT day that focuses directly on the cloud. This lack of emphasis on pushing women to move into the cloud is a big letdown, as we feel it is not enough to bring women into the ICT world if they will still be ten steps behind the rest of the industry. What’s more is that there currently exists a large and impressive network of female executives and leaders that not only work within the cloud industry but that are also working together to help each other in what we call ‘the feminist cloud-volution.’ Women are being given the opportunity to be a part of history and to shape the face of the cloud from the early stages of its adoption into various aspects of our lives, through to its full integration.
So for the next month, until the event, we would recommend ITU to do a strong push for cloud related programs and to call for the involvement of female cloud executives, thereby helping to shape the next generation of cloud leaders.