Intel plans to devote $300 million to encourage diversification in the games industry. The money will go towards hiring more women and minorities and funding programs which foster a “more positive representation within the technology and gaming industries.”
They say that by 2020 they aim “to achieve full representation of women and under-represented minorities at Intel.”
“We must […] do more to lead the growth of diversity and inclusion within the technology industry,” Intels CEO Brian Krzanich said during his keynote address at CES. “Women and under-represented minorities will continue to play a greater role as consumers, influencers, creators and leaders.”
Intel’s plan is twofold: internally, the technology company is altering its hiring policy, aiming for what it calls “full representation” by 2020. In a press release published after Krzanich’s keynote Intel defined the term, saying “Full representation means Intel’s U.S. workforce will be more representative of the talent available in America, including more balanced representation in senior leadership positions.”
Externally, Intel want to “build a pipeline of female and under-represented engineers and computer scientists”. They’re partnering with groups like the International Game Developers Association, the E-Sports League, the National Center for Women in Technology, the CyberSmile Foundation, the Feminist Frequency, and Rainbow PUSH to support their programmes for encouraging women and minority groups to enter the games and technology industries.
“We’re calling on our industry to again make the seemingly impossible possible by making a commitment to real change and clarity in our goals,” said Krzanich. “Without a workforce that more closely mirrors the population, we are missing opportunities, including not understanding and designing for our own customers.”
Intel’s not yet published numbers for its full representation plan. It will be impossible to say if the company has achieved its goal if it doesn’t state what percentage of its staff will be women and minorities in 2020.
Intel caused controversy last year after it gave in to a petition started by Gamergate and pulled its advertising on Gamasutra. The group centred around a Twitter hashtag were upset with the industry site after its editor, Leigh Alexander, published a piece titled ‘Gamers don’t have to be your audience. Gamers are over’.Intel later acknowledged that they “inadvertently created a perception that we are somehow taking sides in an increasingly bitter debate in the gaming community. That was not our intent, and that is not the case. When it comes to our support of equality and women, we want to be very clear: Intel believes men and women should be treated the same […] Intel does not support any organization or movement that discriminates against women.”