Twenty in Data & Technology: a personal message
The Female Lead and Women in Data UKTM announced the 2018 Award Winners of ‘Twenty in Data and Technology’ at the WiD UK annual event. This collection spotlights twenty inspirational females from the powerful data and technology UK talent pool and aims to create a step-change in gender parity, particularly at senior levels.
2018 has been a remarkable year for women everywhere: from the centenary of the first women winning the vote in the UK, to the legion of women driving progress and earning accolades across industries from politics to sport to science. 2018 has earned its title as the ‘Year of the Woman’.
Women in Data UK visited Downing Street in 2018 where they were publicly celebrated for their essential work. The Female Lead shared a stage with Oprah Winfrey and Reese Witherspoon to talk about female empowerment and the light (of inspiration) within us all. 6,000 copies of The Female Lead book and teaching resources have reached over three-quarters-of-a-million school children across the UK and USA. 2019 will be the big roll-out year in America.
Founded by data science entrepreneur Edwina Dunn as a non-profit campaign, The Female Lead works internationally to inspire the next generation of girls by showcasing amazing and diverse role models. As well as sending 18,000 copies of The Female Lead book to UK and US secondary schools, in 2018 The Female Lead has strengthened its bonds with the educational community by extending its pioneering work into universities and colleges, developing new and innovative content streams that resonate with young people today.
Yet, despite this encouraging progress, in the fields of data and technology, there is still work to be done. Recent research has revealed that almost half of all young women do not even consider a career in STEM sectors and of the 2.1 million people working in the UK tech industry, only 17% of them are women. What’s more, the UK needs one million more tech workers by 2020, in order to meet growing demand.
With these challenges in mind, we are excited to announce the twenty amazing female leaders who are changing the landscape of the data and technology industries with their influential work. Our women are diverse and represent different stages of commercial and professional journeys, each of whom is an empowering and inspiring role model in her own right.
Women in Data UK works to connect women across the profession, providing mentoring and showcasing for real-world female role models. Co-founded by Roisin McCarthy and Rachel Keane, and chaired by Payal Jain, their work is having a measurable impact on the career trajectories of today’s practitioners.
We hope that this year’s Awards raise the bar even higher, capturing the diversity and achievement of the women across many industries that can and will inspire future generations of women in the industry. After all, “you can’t be what you can’t see!”
Edwina Dunn (The Female Lead), Roisin McCarthy, Payal Jain and Rachel Keane (Women in Data UK)