Founded in 2013 in Manchester by UX professionals Lizzie Dyson and Georgie Bottomley, Ladies that UX has spread around the world, with groups in the Americas, East Asia, Oceania and Africa. The initiative organises meet-ups where women from the field can talk about all things UX – user experience design –, as well as their careers and the experience of often being the lone women in their company. “I hope that every woman has the chance to achieve more through knowing she is not the only one out there, and by finding support in our community,” writes co-founder Georgie Bottomley on the Ladies that UX website. It’s safe to say it’s a successful concept: Europe alone now has 20 groups, of which one in Amsterdam and one in Utrecht.
The focus at Ladies that UX is less on career-driven networking and more on friendly support. It’s a welcoming and transparent community of women who positively promote and teach each other – and budding UXers can join, too. “We wanted to create a collaborative community for women that could come along and feel relaxed after a long day at work,” writes co-founder Lizzie Dyson on the site. “It’s about learning more about UX and creating friendships within the community, whilst also being comfortable enough to ask for advice.”
From workshops to dinners
It’s this combination of social and informative aspects that has made Ladies that UX such a success. The meet-ups in Amsterdam differ from time to time. Sometimes there will be a speaker and a specific theme – past topics have included ‘Inclusive Design: Cross-cultural UI & Designing for accessibility’ and ‘User First: Amazon Case Study & Value-driven User Research’. Sometimes it’s a workshop. And sometimes the group just meets for some food, some drinks and a chat.
Women in tech
Amsterdam’s tech scene aims for equal opportunities for everyone. And while women in tech are sadly still in the minority, it’s never been a better time for women-focused initiatives and communities – specifically, initiatives that aim to inspire women to pursue a career in STEM fields, that raise awareness of the gender gap in the tech industry and that facilitate networking opportunities. Find more initiatives for women in tech here.