Updating our Diversity & Inclusion Statement
Today we are publishing an update to our statement on supporting diversity and inclusion in technology events. Our original statement, published on this developer blog, has proved itself over the past year by guiding our choices of what events to support and how and when we take an activist stance to promote diversity & inclusion. It’s also something I presented on at Dev Rel Summit earlier this year.
As I wrote last year, I was inspired to write up a diversity statement by the initiative of Stephen Foreshaw-Cain (then Executive Director of UK Government Digital Service). In writing his post, Stephen put GDS at the forefront of a movement. I was also inspired by the work of Emily Webber in developing the Diversity Charter which I had signed up to as an organizer of the Over the Air hack day series.
And, by the way, our statement is aligned with Samsung’s overall diversity vision which is to “create the future by developing a diverse and inclusive culture that attracts and grows the world’s top talent.”
We’ve had a few difficult conversations this year because of our statement and we’ve had to make some tough calls on not participating in certain events. In general, however the response to our statement has been positive and we definitely have had an impact in increasing awareness of diversity & inclusion in the industry.
What I personally could not have anticipated was the extent to which the team here at Samsung Internet would further inspire and inform my thinking on this topic. In particular, I want to shout out to the great work of uve, who has been interning with us for the past six months. Uve ran an event earlier this year called Non-Binary in Tech which we supported which highlighted the amazing work of people who identify partly or solely outside of the gender binary in the technology industry. And making diversity & inclusion a priority has also helped us to recruit an awesome team.
Our newly published diversity & inclusion statement is an update on what we published last year. It reflects the consensus view of the team. We have published it on our web site at a stable URL that we can refer to when we communicate with event organizers. We have also strengthened the language around gender diversity.
This statement is not frozen. We recognize that the struggle to make our industry more diverse and inclusive is ongoing along a number of axes. Our statement currently emphasizes gender in part because that’s where we feel we can make the most difference. We have also strengthened the language around other under-represented groups at tech events and in technology, in particular people of color. We hope to be able to further strengthen this statement in the future.
But in the main, this re-publishing is a re-commitment on behalf of the team to continue to support diversity & inclusion in tech events over the coming year; to make diversity & inclusion a major factor in how we choose which events to participate in and in how we engage with those events. We encourage everyone in a similar position to do the same.