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Diversity has become a huge buzzword for the legal profession, with focus shifting to why there is a lack of diverse representation across the sector. But it isn’t just the legal profession that is experiencing this issue, some business sectors such as the technology industry, are experiencing shocking statistics around gender diversity specifically. PWC highlighted in its Women in Tech report: Time to close the gender gap, that 78% of students couldn’t name a female working in tech and only 3% of females would choose tech as their first choice for a career.
As reported by law.com the legal tech industry is a highly male dominated field with women making up just 13.8% of all legal tech founders. DELTAS, an ethical group dedicated to promoting Diversity & Excellence in Legal Technology And Security has formed to help overcome employment barriers within legal technology and cyber security. It aims to ‘eliminate barriers education and training while increasing employment opportunities for people from all backgrounds and lifestyles’.
Over July and August LexisNexis has partnered with DELTAS for their first ever work experience pilot. The pilot will see 5, 16–17-year old female students join LexisNexis to shadow female product managers, developers, and user experience researchers, in order to inspire the next generation around legal tech. The students, who come from schools in North London that champion STEM outreach activities, will also spend time at a large city law firm to learn more about the legal tech world.
While at LexisNexis the students will be able to learn from a host of women, learning from their stories and being inspired to start their own career journeys. LexisNexis currently works with MAKERS, a company that is focused on diversity in the workplace and actively sponsor women to train as software developers.
This first pilot, which will take place on 29–30 July and 5–6 August, is only the beginning. DELTAS intends on expanding this programme in the upcoming years to inspire further female generations in joining the legal technology sphere. DELTAS also aims to have ‘champions’ from the likes of LexisNexis speak at schools events and in higher education institutes to ensure the message of diversity is spread widely.
For more information on DELTAS click here.
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Hannah is one of the Future of Law blog’s digital and technical editors. She graduated from Northumbria University with a degree in History and Politics and previously freelanced for News UK, before working as a senior news editor for LexisNexis.
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