Psychology professor Nilanjana Dasgupta gave a research talk at the White House on Aug. 21 as part of a mini-conference on finding effective ways to increase the participation of underrepresented youth in technology and to enhance the numbers of American technology innovators and entrepreneurs.
Dasgupta reports that the White House and President Obama's chief technology officer, Todd Park, are urgently searching for strategies to offset the dwindling numbers of domestic students who pursue careers in technology. The Tech Inclusion Roundtable was co-sponsored by the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy and the Office of Public Engagement.
The invitation-only event brought together 50 experts from different professions -- tech entrepreneurs and innovators, venture capitalists, private foundations interested in these issues, education professionals who conduct K-12 programs that teach kids how to program and innovate, White House staff and researchers.
Dasgupta was invited to give a presentation highlighting social science evidence describing barriers that prevent some youth from pursuing academic courses and careers in technology, and importantly, interventions that broaden the participation of underrepresented groups in technology. The talk was well received, she said, “Lots of start-up people, entrepreneurs and White House staffers came up wanting to talk about the presentation afterward.”
Image: Nilanjana Dasgupta (front row, second from right) and other conference participants.
Article courtesy of UMass Office of News & Media Relations: