The London Girl Geek Dinners were founded on the 16th August 2005 as a result of one girl geek, Sarah Lamb, who got annoyed and frustrated about being one of the only females attending technical events. She was tired of constantly having to prove herself and decided that she just wanted a change and to be treated just the same as any other geek out there, gender and age aside.
After all to be geeky is to be intelligent, have passion for a subject and to know that subject in depth. It’s not at all about being better than others, or about gender, race, religion or anything else. Those things just detract from the real fun stuff, the technology, the innovation and the spread of new ideas.
London Girl Geek Dinners was the very first Girl Geek Dinner group to start out. There are now groups all over the world. The events have gone from strength to strength with diverse members and some amazing sponsors who have provided great venues and fantastic support!
The focus of the events is about uniting, supporting, learning and having fun as a female in the technology industry. All our events are run as not for profit and any funds left over are ploughed back into the group to provide the website, labels etc and sponsorship covers the cost of food and drinks as well as the venue hire where applicable.
The format of the events is usually an informal, buffet dinner style with finger foods and wine as well as soft drinks for those who are driving. We have a speaker or three on a subject of choice either based on a technical subject area or business area, or even on women and tech issues (such as mentoring). The events are varied and the reach vast.
We keep the events informal and outside of lecture theaters or offices where possible solely to take the women (and the men… oh yes men are allowed to come, however they must have an invitation from a female attending the event!) into an informal and relaxed environment where they feel comfortable talking and interacting.
We limit the number of male attendees by putting the balance of men to women in the hands of the attendees. This means that there can be a 50:50 split or anything up to that on the male side. Generally the more men in attendance, the more the dynamics of the event change.
It is a learning experience for both the men and the women as men in tech aren’t used to interacting with women in tech on a technical level. Technical women are also not used to being technical with other women either… it’s a learning curve on all sides.
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