Where have all the women gone?

Joint event with BCS Women

Date: Monday 21 May 2012, 6.00pm – 8.00pm, refreshments will be available from 5.30pm.

Venue: Physics B, Penglais Campus, Aberystwyth University, Penglais, Aberystwyth, SY23 3DB

Cost: Free


The early years of computing were full of women. Bletchley Park, the Harvard Observatory and many other pioneering organisations of computation were the preserve of women. Indeed, the first meaning of the word ‘Computer’ was to refer to someone – usually a woman – performing routine sums. Sometime in the 1970s, this changed; it is very hard to distinguish correlation from causation, but the decline in women seems to coincide with the introduction of computers to the classroom.

Now, we number about 15% of the workforce, and there is a clear ‘Leaky Pipeline’ with women choosing to drop out at each stage of educational progression. This talk will discuss the nature of the problem, why we (as UK PLC) need to take it serously, what the BCS is doing about it, and what you can do to help.

If you’re a woman in IT, all this might make you a bit nervous, but don’t worry. I’ll also cover what women can do to ensure that they make the most of their career in the industry.