Industrial design isn't the only field suffering from a dearth of women; the engineering sciences have the same problem. So it's interesting to see that Etsy, through concerted effort, has increased the numbers of their female engineering staff more than four times over.
Before you get too excited—First Line Capital's headline of "How Etsy Grew their Number of Female Engineers by Almost 500% in One Year" might skew your expectations—that simply means they went from four to eighteen female engineers. But the effort is still laudable, particularly since few people in charge seem capable (if they're even truly interested) in solving issues of workplace gender inequality, and here we have a concrete example of how to go about it.
In this nearly 20-minute talk, Etsy CTO Kellan Elliott-McCrea discusses specifically how they enacted the increase—and isn't shy about revealing the failure of the initial foray, which led to a female decline.
My favorite point of Elliot-McCrea's is the bit about "more data." Forums are fine for airing feelings or bringing up individual tales, but it is a comprehensive and data-driven structural analysis of the problem, undertaken by many different people working together, that can yield true results.
Also fascinating: His "Zero or 2+" female statistic, which I wish we could hear more about.
What do you think—is it possible for there to be an ID equivalent to the Hacker School? And if so, which firm or organization do you think would be well-placed to enact one?