WiiT ACCELERATES AND BECOMES A NON-PROFIT
Women in Immersive Technologies, a Facebook group that fights for gender equality in Augmented, Virtual and Mixed Reality Industries (XR) turns into a non-profit and launches its website.
Brussels, October 10th 2019
Women in Immersive Technologies Europe (WiiT) a new pan-European non-profit that aims to inspire women in XR to connect, organise and advance the immersive tech industry was officially launched today.
Turning into a non-profit will allow WiiT to bring corporate partners and other non-profits into the project, provide better and more services to the community. Also to become the front door to other women not yet familiar with immersive technologies. The goal of WiiT is to combat gender inequality in the immersive technologies sector by creating one inclusive network of talented women from all over Europe and provide them with the resources to succeed in the industry. The new website that launches today contains learning resources for women in immersive technologies, as well as a directory of over 200 European women speakers in an aim to improve the diversity of XR conferences and events. WiiT also curates an event calendar of upcoming XR events.
The XR market is growing quickly, with the global immersive technology market expected to reach $570bn by 2025 according to allied market research. However, the employment market for immersive technologies is set to become heavily unbalanced in gender terms. The immersive tech workforce is seeded from both the technology and creative sectors and both of these sectors have huge gender diversity problems — just 1 out of 5 film directors and 18% of tech founders are women. The lack of diverse teams in immersive technologies is already causing problems. Women are more likely to experience motion sickness from XR devices, as well as fuzzy lenses and ill-fitting headsets. This is due to the exclusion of women from the design process, and it creates a vicious cycle where there are further barriers to access for women for this innovative technology.
Women in Immersive Technologies Europe was founded by four pioneering women in the European XR industry: Leen Segers, Ioana Matei, Sara Lisa Vogl, Vera Grablechner. The initiative started as a Facebook group in 2016. It was borne out of the founding team’s experiences in the nascent XR industry, where many industry gatherings and most companies are heavily male-dominated. WiiT aims to combat gender diversity issues in immersive tech by creating an inclusive network of women across Europe who will drive the continent’s immersive future.
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