14th Jan 2014

The Rise and Rise of Women in IT in Ireland in 2013

With a strong percentage of female and international students, CCT is an active proponent of engaging in the IT industry for all groups, including those that are under-represented in certain areas and fields. CCT is always on the lookout for initiatives and news supporting this cause. Earlier this month, SiliconRepublic.com ran an article “The rise and rise of women in tech in 2013” (a version of which appeared in the Sunday Times on January 5), hi-lighting the prominent roles in Irish IT that are held by women. The article reports on the appointment of Marjorie Scardino to the board of Twitter, and then goes on to detail the important roles that women hold in the Irish IT sector:

“… last year also saw a new cohort of Irish women take up leadership positions in the technology sector in Ireland and abroad, with Cathriona Hallahan of Microsoft, Anne O’Leary of Vodafone and Brid Horan of ESB, and others, adding their names to the roll call that already counts the likes of Regina Moran, CEO at Fujitsu, Ann Kelleher at Intel and Caroline Dowling at Flextronics. For many, it is a heartening development, at a time when experts are insisting that positive role models are crucial if the ratio is to change.”

Further, the article explores the role of women in Irish start-ups:

“On the start-up side, Dubliner Grainne Baron’s cloud-based video ad creation tool Viddyad was named winner of the 2013 ESB Spark of Genius Award, at Dublin’s Web Summit in October, picking up a cash prize of €25,000, while Leonora O’Brien, the founder and CEO of Irish technology start-up Pharmapod, won the top European prize in The Global Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards, held in Paris, France in the same month.”

The article concludes very positively:

“There does appear to be a change afoot, and there is some cause for optimism. The talent gap in tech is well documented, nowhere more so than when it comes to software and web developers. It is estimated that just 6 to 7% of all developers are women. However, of the thousands of kids that turn up to CoderDojo coding workshops every Saturday in Ireland, around 30% are young girls, auguring well for the coming years. Perhaps the future of technology will indeed have a more feminine side?”

Women Invent Tomorrow is Silicon Republic’s year-long campaign to champion the role of women in science, technology, engineering and maths.