Wednesday, December 09, 2020

Announcing the PSF Diversity and Inclusion Work Group

Python has become one of the most popular programming languages in the world, meaning that along with this growth the Python community has continued to expand, in every continent around the globe. While this growth has been exciting, it has also brought new challenges and opportunities to improve our global community. In order to further the PSF’s mission to ‘support and facilitate the growth of a diverse and international community of Python programmers’, the Python Software Foundation is excited to announce the launch of the Diversity and Inclusion Workgroup (hereby referred to as the D&I workgroup). The D&I workgroup will help own this important work, as well as provide guidance to the PSF Board of Directors in line with this mandate.


Throughout 2020 the PSF and PSF Board engaged the community in a discussion about board election reform. Many members voiced concerns over the lack of geographical representation on the Board. Given the prior conversations the Board has had about how to better support our international community members and the feedback collected throughout 2020, the D&I workgroup was created. Ultimately, the D&I workgroup will help advise on how to increase diversity and inclusion on a global scale in the Python community. Whether it’s supporting international users, improving board representation or increasing core development mentorship, this group will proactively engage with the community and PSF leadership to achieve this larger goal. 


D&I Workgroup membership

The D&I workgroup will initially focus on geographical diversity. We are aware that diversity and inclusion is multi-faceted and must address issues beyond geography. As the workgroup becomes more established, its mandate and membership will broaden as well.

With this purpose in mind, the Board has recruited Python community members from every continent - minus Antarctica - in the world. Our members will advocate for and provide insights on behalf of their local communities as best they can, and the workgroup will be chaired by PSF Director Marlene Mhangami. Below is the list of initial members:

Member List (In Alphabetical Order)

  • Anna Ossowski (United Kingdom/Germany)

  • Anthony Shaw (Australia)

  • Boluwaji Akinlade (Nigeria)

  • Christian Heimes (Germany)

  • Cynthia Xin (China)

  • Dustin Ingram (USA)

  • D├ębora Azevedo (Brazil)

  • Georgi Ker (Thailand) 

  • Iqbal Abdullah (Malaysia/Japan)

  • Katia Lira (Mexico)

  • Lorena Mesa (USA)

  • Mannie Young (Ghana)

  • Manuel Kaufmann(Argentina)

  • Mariam Haji (Kenya)

  • Marlene Mhangami (Zimbabwe)

  • Phoebe Chua (Malaysia/USA)

  • Reuven Lerner (Israel) 

  • Sara EL-ATEIF (Morocco) 

  • Sayantika Banik (India)

  • Tereza Iofciu (Germany)

Goals of the D&I Workgroup 

The Workgroup will pursue its goals in several ways including: 

  1. Communicating and collecting feedback from the Python community to understand how the PSF can better serve and grow a diverse membership. 

  2. Measuring, evaluating, and sharing the PSF’s progress towards its diversity initiatives on a regular basis

  3. Discussing policy, initiatives and grant proposals to recommend to the PSF Board of Directors in line with the group’s purpose. 

  4. Recruiting members that will advocate for and provide insights on behalf of their local communities and groups. 

We need your help! 

For more details about the D&I workgroup (e.g. how it will function & report feedback, values) our full charter is available here. We are also asking for feedback from the community on your thoughts about diversity and inclusion. Please take a few minutes to fill out this form. The community can expect ongoing reports as part of our commitment to transparency. If you would like to reach out to the workgroup directly with any questions, ideas, or thoughts please email diversity-inclusion-wg@python.org. If you would like to become a member of the workgroup, please send us an email expressing your interest. We will begin to review new applications for membership in the first quarter of 2021.

We are excited about supporting the global Python community in new and creative ways. The D&I workgroup is only able to do this work with the help of the Python Software Foundation. Currently, the PSF is running a fundraiser to raise $60,000 USD by December 31st. Pythonistas can get discounted offers on products and services to level up their Python knowledge, and help the PSF raise funds at the same time! Visit the fundraiser home page to see more details or read more on the blog

Thank you for being part of our community!