Panel: Computing Innovation and Diversity of Thought


August 2, 2018


Vani Mandava, Lucy Sanders, Margaret Martonosi, Jim Kurose, Abolade Gbadegesin


National Center for Women & Information Technology, Princeton University


Today, many of the technical products and services we use are created by one largely homogeneous group of people: men. That doesn’t make today’s technology bad or unhelpful. However, it does mean our society is missing out on other perspectives. Considering how much technology drives our economy and our lives, it makes sense to consider this question: “What if women, and all groups underrepresented in computing, were at the technology design and research table alongside white males?” Research tells us we would both solve different problems and solve problems differently. This panel of computing innovators will explore the possibility for exciting outcomes if more perspectives were at the table.


Vani Mandava, Lucy Sanders, Margaret Martonosi, Jim Kurose, Abolade Gbadegesin

Lucy Sanders is CEO and co-founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), a consortium of more than 300 corporations, universities, and nonprofits working to increase the participation of girls and women in computing and information technology. She also serves as executive-in-residence for the ATLAS Institute at the University of Colorado Boulder.

Sanders has an extensive industry background, having worked in R&D and executive positions at AT&T Bell Labs, Lucent Bell Labs, and Avaya Labs for more than 20 years, specializing in systems-level software and solutions, multimedia communication, and customer-relationship management. In 1996, she was awarded the Bell Labs Fellow Award, the highest technical accomplishment bestowed at the company. In 2004, she was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Department of Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder, and in 2011, she was recognized with the university’s George Norlin Award, for distinguished lifetime service. She has been inducted into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame and recently was named by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to serve on the department’s Innovation Advisory Board. Sanders received her B.S. and M.S. in computer science from Louisiana State University and the University of Colorado Boulder, respectively.