Celebrating London’s Women in Tech
It’s London tech week and we have been celebrating all things tech — unicorns, jobs, investments, and more. It seems that London has become the tech capital of the world — The Evening Standard even claims we are bigger than Silicon Valley. However there is one area where we are still failing says and article in The Memo published yesterday. Of course, it’s females in tech. There aren’t enough of us and that’s soo disappointing isn’t it? Our gender has failed again to make the grade and jump into tech. But why do we have to be bombarded by articles telling us that it’s disappointing, when instead we should celebrating the successes of the women who are in tech and have been since the beginning?
We have some great females in in the London scene. Amazing entrepreneurs such as Sherry Coutu have led the way, investors such as Eileen Burbridge. We have great champions such as Bindi Karia, and Kathryn Parsons who has been persuading women to code. The Head of Facebook in Europe is a women Nicola Mendelsohn and so so many more I could list.
There are 3 Accelerators run by women in London — Collider, where I am the Co-Founder, Diane Perlman at Microsoft Venutres, and of course Reshma Sohoni from Seedcamp. In Collider’s first year, there were no female founders, when I was slightly disappointed. The next year, we had three!
There are two female tech leaders who have entered the House of Lords recently Baroness Shields, and of course Martha Lane Fox. And not forgetting Dame Stephanie Shirley who founded Xansa in 1962 who employed only women. Now that is amazing — how many people know that?
But there’s hardly any celebration of these success stories in the general press. And any recognition of women leaders is consistently followed by a sub-heading labelled something along the lines of ‘Gender Equality?’ — such as this story printed in TechCityNews. Yet, the story has absolutely nothing to do with gender equality, as it’s covering the Queen’s Birthday Honour List.
By not openly celebrating these success stories, we’re hiding the women role models other women can look up to and be inspired by. Women aren’t going to feel welcomed into an industry when the general sentiment in the press gives them no reason to be. You know what we women are like — we think there must be a reason why. Maybe it’s not fun or too hard. It’s discouraging towards the next generation of talented women looking to start a career. Yet, there are some powerful women shaping London’s tech scene today. So come on — let’s talk about them and how great women are in tech and celebrate the success stories to inspire the next generation.