History | Gender | Computing
30 May 2008
Charles Babbage Institute
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis MN 55455
Women were active participants in building and programming the first electronic digital computers, and notably prominent in the first generation of computer programmers in the 1950s, but they have faced serious barriers to full participation in the computing professions. Today, computing persists as one of the most gender-segregated domains of modern life. How and when did a male-coded world of computing emerge? How and why has it has continued? What are the exceptions -- and promising strategies for change?
The Charles Babbage Institute at the University of Minnesota presents a day-long public conference devoted to a much-needed examination of these questions. While the National Science Foundation and other policy actors have devoted immense resources to increasing women's participation in computing, over the past two decades there has been a striking **drop** in women's participation in computing education and a corresponding tail-off in the U.S. workforce. Clearly, an important "missing piece" is yet to be discovered. This international conference examines gender and the diverse uses of computing in offices, libraries, schools, mass media, and the computing profession.
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