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Friday 19 September 2014

Google workforce is too white and too male

Published 30/05/2014 | 02:30

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The search engine revealed the gender and racial makeup of its 50,000-strong workforce
The search engine revealed the gender and racial makeup of its 50,000-strong workforce

Google has admitted that it is "miles from where we want to be" when it comes to employing women and minorities.

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The search engine revealed the gender and racial makeup of its 50,000-strong workforce, disclosing a significantly below-average proportion of minorities and women.

Google's disclosure of its workforce demographics represented a rare move for a US company, even if the figures came as no surprise to those familiar with Silicon Valley – an industry long-scrutinised for its lack of diversity. Blacks and Hispanics made up just 2 and 3pc of overall employees at Google, respectively, while women accounted for 30pc, the company said in a blogpost.

That compares with the US workforce average of about 47pc women in 2012. For blacks and people of Hispanic descent, it was 12pc and 16pc respectively.

"Put simply, Google is not where we want to be when it comes to diversity, and it's hard to address these kinds of challenges if you're not prepared to discuss them openly, and with the facts," said vice president Laszlo Bock.

The employment gaps for women and minorities in the tech sector may stem from education, Mr Bock said. Women earn roughly 18pc of all computer science degrees in the United States. Blacks and Hispanics make up less than 10pc of US college grads and collect fewer than 5pc of degrees in computer science majors, respectively, he argued.

But Mr Bock said Google was open to discussion about possible solutions.

Irish Independent

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