Baltimore’s Tech Industry Gender Gap

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We’ve heard a lot of great news about Baltimore’s tech community in recent months–not least that our city’s tech workers have the second-highest average salaries in the nation. But things aren’t entirely utopian in Baltimore’s cyber-world: 72% of tech jobs in the city are held by men.

The good news is that we’re actually doing slightly better than the nation as a whole. The bad news is, that’s a pretty abysmal ratio.

Gender imbalances in the tech industry stem from all sorts of things, including young girls who are dissuaded from taking computer science classes; rampant sexism within the industry; and tech-bro culture as a whole.

Despite that dismal news, some tech companies are taking steps in the right direction. “It can sometimes feel like topics like gender dynamics get raised in the tech world and everyone heaves a collective sigh: ‘are we still talking about gender in 2014?,'” writes Lola Pierson, who works at local software company Figure 53. “[But] there is a way to make a working environment where everyone feels valued and like diversity is an asset, not a liability. I know this kind of working environment is possible and exists and not just a theoretical reality and I know that because I work there. And even though it feels magical it’s actual not magic. It’s a practical reality created by my teammates.” (Read more about what Pierson thinks Figure 53 is doing right here.) The sold-out programming workshop for women that took place last year in Baltimore is another sign that our tech community is ripe for change.

So keep your hopes up… and if you start to get disappointed, remember that things are better here than they are in Seattle, where men have a whopping 78% of all the tech jobs.

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