May 23, 2011

Companies, universities, and startups convene in New York City -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Today the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), a national nonprofit coalition, kicks off its Summit on Women and IT at New York University. This annual event convenes prominent leaders to focus on best practices and ideas for building a stronger technology workforce and accelerating innovation through the increased participation of girls and women.

Although women comprise half the world’s population, they play only a small role in inventing the technology that will solve the difficult problems our society faces. The Department of Labor estimates that the U.S. workforce will add 1.4 million technology jobs by 2018, yet universities will produce fewer than half of the technology-trained candidates needed to fill these jobs. Data show that the number of women in IT is dwindling; in 2009, only 25% of U.S. IT professionals were women, compared to 36% in 1991.

The NCWIT Summit on Women and IT assembles stakeholders from corporations, K-12 and higher education, non-profits, startups, and government organizations, to discuss topics such as:

  • How an increasingly diverse U.S. population influences the future of technology
  • Ways to better inform and educate girls about IT career choices
  • How diversity impacts innovation and how stereotype threat affects underrepresented groups in particular environments
  • What organizations can do to promote a diverse work environment, retain talent, and avoid high attrition
  • How to develop diversity in open source computing

“Getting more women into technology is a game-changer,” said Lucy Sanders, CEO and Co-founder of NCWIT. “There’s increased demand for technology talent, and organizations need to capitalize on diversity in fulfilling their business objectives. Our work engages and unites the experts and stakeholders from different backgrounds so that we can make accelerated progress in recruiting, retaining, and advancing women in IT.”

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The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) is a non-profit coalition of 250 prominent corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and non-profits working to increase women's participation in IT and computing. NCWIT helps organizations recruit, retain, and advance women from K-12 and higher education through industry and entrepreneurial careers; provides statistics, research, and best practices; and serves as a national voice of awareness and advocacy for the increased participation of girls and women in IT and computing. Find out more at