The tech industry has long faced an image problem of being too “boys only.” A panel of female Google executives recently gathered to discuss the challenges and opportunities for getting more women in tech.
“It’s boys will be boys. And girls will be girls,” said Google’s VP of New Business Development Megan Smith, who moderated the Women Techmakers event at the Google I/O Conference Tuesday night. According to this post from Inc.‘s Maeghan Ouimet, the panel discussed how “a big part of the problem…is the fact that the tech industry fails to attract girls’ attention at a young age,” and highlighted “the impact young immersion in the field can have for girls who are interested in tech. Statistics presented showed that in the 1980s 40% of computer science majors were women. Today, only 14% are female.”
“The numbers continue to show just how scarce women are becoming in this growing industry,” Ouimet writes. “According to CNET, a recent survey conducted by the Harvey Nash Group found that the number of women in prominent technology positions in the U.S. is down for the second year in a row.” The panel called for more outreach devoted to introducing technology to girls early on, and pointed to the Girls Who Code program, supported by Google, Twitter, eBay, and General Electric as the type of initiative there needs to be more of.