Some of the most important technological advances in history have been carried out by women developers: Margaret Hamilton codified the software that allowed humans to reach the moon. Grace Murray created the first complex computing language. Radia Perlman, who made a key discovery to develop the Internet. And the list gets bigger and bigger.
These are only three examples but there were and still are a lot of women who are making an impact. However the reality shows that the presence of women is significantly lower than men in programming sector. According to a Java, web, mobile and PHP Salary Survey, only 11% of the worldwide developers are women but when it comes to Spain, the percentage of female professionals lowers to 9,3%, meaning that only 1 out of 10 professional developers are women.
Nowadays tech industry offers the most labour vacancies. In fact the European Commission estimates that more than half a million of the digital job opportunities will be vacant by 2020. Nevertheless students of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) degrees have been reduced by 28% in Spain in the last years. Data about women are lower again. Despite being the university collective with the biggest majority, their presence in engineering doesn’t reach 25% of the total.
This gender gap is not due to a difference between women and men interests or abilities, stereotypes are the cause. These wrong and preconceived ideas aren’t related to the individual’s real skills. At Barcelona JUG we consider necessary to break down stereotypes. We think that society should work to erase them, specially in education and during childhood. It is also really important to take action in work environments where we could have the opportunity to apply and encourage internal policies for gender equality. Did you know that companies are more productive if they have diverse talent in their staff?
For all those reasons, this year, we want to dedicate the 6th edition of the JBCN conference to honor women within the computing field. Because we want and need more women in our programming teams.
Gender bias shouldn’t matter because we can all be Java programmers. Why don’t you join us on the next JBCN Conference on September 7th, 8th and 9th in Barcelona? We hope to see you in the most important Java and JVM conference of Southern Europe. You can buy your ticket by clicking here.