[FOSDEM] encouraging diversity

Daniel Pocock daniel at pocock.pro
Sun Nov 1 16:55:22 CET 2015

It is all very well to talk about the Code of Conduct and negative
situations, but what about approaching things from the other direction,
creating positive situations?

Does FOSDEM have any policies, resources or budget to actively encourage
participation from people who are not white males, for example, to pay
travel grants for female speakers?

Does anybody keep track of any third-party sources of funding that could
be helpful for bringing speakers and participants from groups that are
under-represented?  I've heard that Google offers some funding for
example[1] and it would be good to encourage women to apply for this.

Some other ideas that come to mind:
- Offering some sort of public speaking seminar, aimed mainly at people
from such groups who haven't had a lot of experience, on the Friday
before FOSDEM.
- Pairing first time speakers with an experienced mentor some time ahead
of the event.
- Offering some kind of reward to the dev-room that does the most to
encourage diversity (e.g. giving the dev-room a guaranteed place or
bigger room for 2017 or giving the dev-room managers input on a
main-track selection in the following year)




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