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One of the factors that make the essence of a hackathon is narrow the bonds with the community, which consequently strengthens the ecosystem.
For this to happen, some things need to be guaranteed and one of them (perhaps the main one) is the diversity among participants.
Yes, a hackathon needs a lot more women (cis, trans and non-binary). In fact, thousands of other environments still have a lack of female presence. We have already talked about this need of the tech market in several texts of this blog, but here the term “diversity” takes on a slightly larger proportion.
We need diversity in every possible meaning! Of gender yes, but also of skills, ethnicity, age range, social class, limitations and any other niche that has a gap to fill.
We can’t leave anyone out! Not only because hackathons need to be seen as synonymous of inclusion and representativeness, but also because it’s a way of having an ecosystem with varying insights and feedbacks.
Good ideas come from different ways of thinking, different backgrounds, different pains, different experiences. Good ideas come from DIFFERENCE! Diversity drives innovation.
If we want the hackathon to be a space for great connections and innovative solutions, it needs to be a space for everyone, a place where anyone can feel comfortable.
And when we say ANYONE, we need to think about those who don’t have easy access to this world. More than that, we have to reduce the geographical distance, the economic gap, we have to make the experience of a hackathon and all that it represents is within everyone’s reach.
After all, it’s much easier to participate in projects where you see yourself. That’s what representativeness means.