AS Of June 2017, We're Trialling Ongoing Diversity Initiatives:
We're working hard to ensure we continue developing a diverse Kiwi hardware ecosystem through the way our tickets are allocated (more to come on this). At our July HealthTech event, 50% of our tickets went to people who identified as women and non-binary folks, and 50% to people who identified as men. We're trying something different again for our Music event.
*SEPTEMBER MUSIC EVENT: Over half of our tickets will be available as General Admittance to anyone, and the remaining percentage will be retained and allocated to genders who aren't as well represented (we're choosing to address gender first) or by application.
Let's dive right in to why we're doing this.
DIVERSITY IS A Good Thing
We believe diversity of thought makes life as good as it is. Diversity of thought comes from the many things that make us who we are, like diversity of gender, age, race, physical ability, religion etc.
We believe hearing from a broad set of perspectives allows us to solve problems better and accelerate positive change faster. Research shows more diverse teams are smarter, more creative, and make better products. Increasing the diversity of tech companies and communities, is just plain good for business.
Our mission at Hardware Meetup AKL has always been to bring together some of New Zealand's brightest engineers, hardware entrepreneurs, product designers and enthusiasts to meet each other and showcase some of New Zealand's most exciting products. We're aiming to create an environment for open conversations, opportunities, and shared resources where everyone feels welcome.
Because we’re building a Hardware community, which is in turn contributing to the New Zealand Tech ecosystem, we believe it's critically important that we actively work to increase the diversity of attendees at our events. One way we can help ensure diversity is through making tickets available to specific groups.
As of June 2017, we'll be trialling ongoing diversity initiatives and will be fine-tuning how our tickets are allocated. More to come on this.
Diversity is not only about gender, it's so much more. It’s about nationalities, age, physical ability, religion, race, skill-set, socioeconomic background etc. The list is long. We choose to address gender equality directly as a first step.
WHAT'S HAPPENED AT PREVIOUS EVENTS?
We've had the pleasure of running five events so far - AgTech, The Hidden Genius, MarineTech, Aerospace, and HealthTech.
We’ve been working to ensure a mix of exciting and diverse companies, attendees and presenters at these events. We’ve worked to ensure an accessible venue, and have advertised through lots of different channels to help get a variety of people at our events. In order to balance the genders and get a diverse crowd we've put in effort to personally reach out to attendees.
We'll keep doing that, but we also don't want to keep hoping our tickets go to a diverse audience. We want to actively do something about it.
What can I do to help?
Make sure to book your ticket early to avoid missing out on an event! Our amazing venue, GridAKL, only has so much room available! We'll be staying at that venue until at least the end of 2017. We'll also be keeping attendee numbers at around 100, so the value to you is super high.
Are you part of a minority in tech? Come to our event! We need more amazing people to inspire so they can start building hardware companies.
Bring a friend to the next Hardware Meetup AKL, maybe someone with great skills, super interested in Hardware, who can contribute their unique perspective, and meet our community.
We need to scale this thing! How can we build a more connected and more empowered hardware community? How can we compete together better on the global stage? This is a conversation we'll keep bringing up. You can send any thoughts to Elyse here.
We’ll continue to work behind the scenes to bring together a high quality, diverse bunch of people passionate about Hardware. To grow a dynamic and exciting event - that you can get lots of value from.
There are a bunch of other great events happening in the Auckland region - namely, the IoT Meetups, Colab Weekly Maker Nights, and Embedded Systems Meetups. Not everyone interested in hardware will be able to fit at our events, so it’s a great excuse to support other initiatives too.
And finally, we appreciate you, fellow Hardware lover. We hope you'll continue supporting us in our mission to showcase New Zealand's coolest hardware and bring amazing people together!
Interested in coming along to future events?