Women in Groovy Open Source Projects

After many recent announcements about the abuse of women at different companies in our industry, I saw a thread on Twitter about encouraging and supporting women in tech.  There was one aspect of a tweet though that got me thinking about the percentage of women applicants at several companies who use Groovy and related technologies.  My first thought was that maybe it was a lack of applications in general or perhaps even an HR screening problem so I started to look for how many women might apply for a job based on prior knowledge and contributions to open source projects. For each project, I looked through the list of top contributors on Github.

As I searched through the list, I saw a depressing pattern.  My prior work with company data shows that only about 5% of Groovy developers are women. That number is consistent with conference attendance at Groovy conferences. I also know that when we look at other programming language communities, we typically see an even smaller number of women making open source contributions compared to the workforce, so I don't know what I expected to find. There are a few GitHub users that don't have a gendered name, picture, or anything identifying pronoun usage, but I'm fairly certain there were no women in the top hundred committers for many projects I surveyed.

So, I've spent some late nights in the last week updating my gr8ladies-d3 project to show some stats about open source projects that rely heavily on groovy. The results were not encouraging.  75% of the projects I looked at didn't have any women contributors at all.

I know that as I continue to contribute, my name will be added to the list of some of these projects. But just like all of the companies trying to hire me right now just because they want a woman on their team, I cannot fix the problem alone. I'm just moving from one team to another, not increasing the number of women in our community.  So please consider encouraging more women to join the groovy community through hiring, training, and promoting women in your companies.  If you want help, send me an email, and I can refer you to some great resources.

To see the final results or contribute more data points, go to http://jlstrater.github.io/gr8ladies-d3/opensource.html