Male Allies and Advocates:* Helping Create Inclusive & Highly Productive Technology Workplaces

The NCWIT Male Allies and Advocates Toolkit is intended to support workplace efforts to engage male allies and advocates in diversity and inclusion initiatives. These tools are designed to equip change leaders in two areas: 1) Setting the stage for success and raising initial awareness 2) Developing a plan of action for male advocacy efforts and evaluating success.

Phase 1 Toolkit: Setting the Stage for Successful Male Ally Efforts

This toolkit provides resources for putting together an event or series of events to raise awareness about the role male (or other majority-group) allies can play in increasing diverse participation in technical workplaces.

Pre- and Post-event Sample readings:

Phase 2 Toolkit: Strategies Male Allies Can Start Using Today (and Beyond) (Coming Soon!)

This toolkit identifies actions that male allies (or anyone really) can take to accelerate change efforts and create more inclusive environments. For actions that you can start implementing today, check out the “Start Small, Start Now” section. Check out the “Plan for the Long Term” section for ways that organizations can strategically engage male allies in accelerating systemic or company-wide inclusion efforts.

* For purposes of this toolkit we use the terms ally and advocate rather interchangeably because both have strategic advantages and disadvantages depending on the organizational context in which they are used. For example, some of our team members felt that in their organization the term ally could be interpreted as a more supportive role, deemphasizing important actions that also need to be taken. Other team members felt that the term advocate could too easily be interpreted as men “helping” or “rescuing" individual women. Still other members prefer to use the term “majority-group” (instead of “male’) allies or advocates in order to highlight how we can all advocate for other underrepresented groups when we are the majority (e.g., white folks advocating for racial diversity).

We encourage organizations to carefully consider which term or terms work best in their own organizations. This toolkit also contains resources for being clear about what exactly male or majority group allies or advocates should be doing — in short, these efforts should not be about “helping” or “fixing” individual women or underrepresented groups but rather they should be about changing the environment and making it more inclusive for everyone.


We would like to thank our dedicated Workforce Alliance Male Advocates Team and Co-chairs, Will Harden (USAA) and Cameron Fadjo (Learnable), for making these resources possible. For information on how to join the Male Advocates team contact Dori Farah at

Release Date: February 29, 2016
Audience(s): Workforce
Type(s): TipsToolkit