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In celebration of London Tech Week’s tenth anniversary, we were pleased to welcome the Hackney Diversity In Tech Commission's “Opening Doors to Diverse Talent” Showcase to Here East.

The showcase, held in Plexal Park, was a series in response to the ‘Diversity in Tech: Breaking the Barriers’ – a groundbreaking report which aims to bring attention to the socio-economic barriers to entering the digital tech industry.

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Seeking to raise awareness of the importance of education and career services in promoting alternate career pathways into the tech sector, data from the report revealed that across the UK tech industry as a whole, just 2% of employees are Black, 11% have disabilities, 17% are women and 23% are aged over 50.

To discuss this disparity, the showcase featured keynotes from the Mayor of Hackney, Philip Glanville and Cllr Carole Williams, Cabinet Member, Employment, Skills & Human Resources on how Hackney’s impressive growth over the past two decades in digital tech, innovation and creative industries can provide employment opportunities accessible to everyone in the borough.


Mayor Glanville spoke about the importance of diversity for employers and stated, “Diversification can be the engine of economic growth, and the continual spark we need for fresh ideas and new paradigms of thinking…this conference today is a fantastic opportunity for you all to form new partnerships, and learn more about what you can do to participate in the diversification of tech.“

The afternoon also featured a fascinating panel session which explored how East London can build new pathways for diverse talent by highlighting employer best practices, shaping a diverse external voice and addressing structural challenges within the digital tech industry. Panelists included Sharon Annafi, DE&I lead at Havas, Nancy Scott, Corporate Projects Director at Hoptroff, Dami Hastrup, Founder of MOONHUB and Natasha Grujić, Head of People at ustwo.

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Commenting on the progress of Commission Cllr Carole Williams said:

“Hackney’s Diversity in Tech Commission was established to close the science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) skills gap and understand our diverse community’s intersecting barriers to accessing good jobs in the digital tech economy.

We are inspired by the willingness to participate and hope that the findings contribute to an ongoing conversation about economic opportunity and inclusion among leaders to create real change at the local level.”


As a technology and innovation campus rooted in driving forward the skills of the future in London and across the country, we are so pleased to provide a forum to discuss how we can transform the tech industry into a universally accessible community.

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