Why Diversity Should Matter to Computer Scientists

Manuel A. Pérez-Quiñones, University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Host: Misha Kazhdan

In this talk, Dr. Pérez-Quiñones presents some of the somber statistics of underrepresentation in computing. He argues that computer science students and professionals should care deeply about this inequity: a lack of diversity in software development teams can have serious consequences for a fair society. Dr. Pérez-Quiñones presents examples of the negative effects that underrepresentation in computing teams can have. The presentation concludes with an open question: What can we do to broaden participation in computing?

Speaker Biography

Dr. Manuel A. Pérez-Quiñones is Professor of Software and Information Systems at UNC at Charlotte. His research interests include HCI, CS education, and diversity in computing. He has held various administrative positions in academia, including Associate Dean for the Graduate School at VT and Associate Dean of the College of Computing and Informations. He was Chair of the Coalition to Diversify Computing, Program Chair for the 2014 Tapia Conference, and Symposium Co-Chair for SIGCSE 2019. He serves on the SIGCSE Board, the Advisory Board for CMD-IT, member of the Steering Committee for BPCNet and Technical Consultant for the Center for Inclusive Computing at Northeastern. His service to diversify computing has been recognized with ACM Distinguished Member status, the A. Nico Habermann award, and Richard A. Tapia Achievement Award. In over 30 years of professional experience, he has worked at UNCC (6 years), Virgina Tech (15 years), University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez (4 years), Visiting Professor at the US Naval Academy, and Computer Scientist at the Naval Research Lab (6 years).