The Ada Scotland Festival brings together partners involved in addressing the issue of gender balance in Computing Science education in Scotland. The University of Glasgow’s Dr Matthew Barr leads on the initiative, alongside Festival co-founders Dr Ella Taylor-Smith (Edinburgh Napier University) and Toni Scullion (dressCode), and Festival Manager, Anna Doyle (University of Glasgow, BIMA, CYF) and a voluntary advisory board, drawn from across the sector.

The Ada Scotland Festival has grown out of a SICSA-supported workshop organised by Dr Barr at the University of Glasgow’s Centre for Computing Science Education. The workshop brought together employers, lecturers and teachers to identify ways in which the continuing gender imbalance in Computing Science might be addressed. The need for a more joined-up approach was one of the outcomes of the workshop, and that’s where the Festival comes in.

The Ada Scotland Festival launched in October 2020, featuring 32 partners, 16 live events, and dozens of other activities. In 2021, we featured 19 live events and many new partners!

While the Festival takes the form of a series of scheduled events (around Ada Lovelace Day in October), the Festival website provides a persistent platform for organisations to engage with the public. 

Together, we can offer a more joined up approach to tackling gender imbalance in Computing Science, playing to individual partners’ strengths while improving the visibility of all concerned.