Women contribute some of the most amazing developments in STEM – a female Google employee just added 9 trillion digits to pi, FFS – yet at tech conferences, it seems they're still treated like some kind of sexual buffet.
New research from Ensono throws up some depressing stats: firstly that one in four women who've been to a tech conference experienced sexual harassment there, and secondly that almost three-quarters (70 per cent) of women who've sat on a panel at a tech conference found themselves to be the only woman on it.
Called Speak Up: Bringing More Women’s Voices to Tech Conferences, the study interviewed 500 women in tech across the US and UK.
It also audited three years' worth of speaker lineups from 18 big tech conferences around the world, and found that for every five speeches, four are given by men.
Things are improving in this arena, but slowly: the report shows the number of female speakers went up by just 5% between 2016 and 2018.
The study was inspired by Ensono Director of Public Cloud Product Lin Classon's own experiences at tech conferences, where she takes photos of empty women's spaces: