MP criticises lack of female representation in UK games development

Labour MP for Newcastle upon Tyne Central Chi Onwurah has asked Parliament to address the lack of females employed in UK games development.

The call to action was made last night in a discussion about low-level female employment in the tech sector ahead of today’s International Girls in ICT Day.

Tory MP for North Swindon stated first asked why only 17 per cent of the UK games industry workforce is female, stating that the sector is crying out for more”,

However, Onwurah’s numbers suggested the situation is actually far worse.

It is certainly the case that the video games industry is a modern one,” she told the Commons. One would hope that it would be reflective of society, including those who play games, but it is not.

The figures I have for females in the video games industry are even worse than the honourable gentleman’s 17 per cent.

Half of the UK’s co-educational state schools send no girls at all to sit A-level physics. In 2012, 2,400 female students from the UK went on to full-time undergraduate computer courses, as opposed to over 15,000 men. Between 2001 and 2011, the percentage of technology jobs held by women declined from 22 per cent to 17 per cent.

My figures show that only six per cent of those who work in ICT in the UK games industry are women, despite the fact that they make up 50 per cent of those who play the games.”

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