For Sustainability in Software Inclusivity is a MUST!

The Software Sustainability Institute (SSI) hosts its first ever hybrid Collaborations Workshop (CW23) in Manchester, UK and online.  Included in the mix was a hefty dose of an often forgot about topic at technical conferences – that of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The volunteers of Women in HPC were delighted to be invited to present a mini-workshop on the first day of the CW23 conference held in Manchester, UK, and online.  Included within the program was an entire section on career development, including a deep focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion.  Our workshop, which encompassed an hour of their unconference, focused on talks from Co-Founder of WHPC, Alison Kennedy, Executive Committee Member, Cristin Merritt, and WHPC Ally, Alan Real.

Led by Marion Weinzierl, Co-Chair of our WHPC N8 Chapter, the event started with an overview of community and what it means to volunteer.  This then transitioned into a brilliant talk around the history of Women in HPC and how diversity, equity and inclusion has evolved from ‘niche side topic’ to a central discussion point at many technical and scientific conferences.  Concluding the talk series was a presentation around transforming workspaces for inclusivity and the role allies play in bringing equity into the workplace.

The discussion ranged from high level inclusion techniques to personal antidotes around how the technical community has grown to be more accepting of underrepresented groups.  While there is still work to do in this space the WHPC team was excited to see so many of the SSI CW23 attendees at our session.  We are grateful to this community, as well as that of the Research Software Engineering (RSE) community, for placing inclusivity at the heart of their programs and including us as part of their discussions.

CW23 is happening live now – and is unfortunately SOLD OUT – but there is good news for those unable to participate!  When the workshop concludes the SSI team will be publishing public conference proceedings.  We look forward to including these documents when they are available as our mini-workshop was just ONE of the many great sessions around diversity, equity, and inclusion at the event.

In-person and online attendees at the first hybrid Collaborations Workshop hosted by SSI. Image – SSI events