Embracing The Power of Communities (and avoiding exploitation)

Type of session: talk Track: 2 (BATEMAN THEATRE)
Start Time: 12.30

As the world continues to fight for improved inclusion investors, brands, and advertising campaigns are also jumping on board. But are they getting it right? Communities that have been traditionally excluded or underrepresented within tech can be huge sources of innovation and inspiration and can provide a catalyst for much-needed disruption within established industries. However, there is a careful line between inclusion and exploitation. In this talk, I will look at the power communities can bring and examples of both the good and the bad of engaging these communities across the tech sector. I will end with tips on how organisations can look to embrace, empower, and include communities in their long-term success strategies.

Session takeaways

  • How communities can be powerful
  • The importance of truly embracing the community, rather than exploiting it
  • Ways to build inclusion into everything from employment to workshops


Co-Founder, Kensa Health; Co-Founder, TECgirls; SETsquared Cornwall EiR; Chair of the Digital Skills Partnership Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly

Caitlin has worked in tech for over 15 years and was a Director at the Cornish embedded software company Bluefruit for 4 years, helping the company to grow in revenue and in the number of women they employed. She also advocated for improved paternity rights across the company to encourage a culture of equality. She has recently set up her own digital health company called Kensa Health, working to help solve the women’s health gap with support from the Plymouth University EPIC program. Alongside this, Caitlin also runs TECwomen CIC and the TECgirls project, which aims to ignite a passion for technology, engineering, and digital creativity among girls in Cornwall. She is also the Chair of the Digital Skills Partnership for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and supports innovative start-ups as a part of SETsquared Cornwall. While Caitlin’s businesses have a strong focus on gender equality, her work also looks at improvements around neurodiversity and racial, cultural, and economic inclusion.

Note: Speaker information is subject to change

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