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Forum on women in tech

"Glass ceiling not found"

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16 June 2018
Scala Cinema, Brno

Top women from the tech industry will share their expertise and know-how on leading projects and teams in global IT companies.

Speakers

Stephanie New

Software Engineer

Deliverr

Talk: Why you should focus on skill building

Stephanie graduated from MIT with a degree in CS with a focus in distributed systems. She has worked in the tech industry for many years as a backend systems engineer. Her experiences include architecting a high-frequency trading platform, scaling Dropbox Enterprise, and designing the backend systems of Dropbox Paper. Currently, she is working on fast and affordable fulfillment at Deliverr and is a part-time consultant at Reflectivity.

Katja Minitsenka

Program Manager

Google Assistant

Talk: Mars on Earth | Making science more approachable via Google Earth

Katja is working on Google Assistant|Actions on Google team, that brings 3rd party apps and capabilities onto the Assistant, thus making it even more useful. In her previous role at Google, she was working on localization team, helping launch all Search products internationally. A proud UC Berkeley alumni, with Political Science major, Katja is very passionate about politics, technology and the vast reach both have in our lives, which she passionately explores in her free time. A lifelong student, Katja loves learning new things and being challenged both physically and mentally; reading, sailing, running, playing piano and singing are just a few of the things she enjoys in her spare time.

Anastasia Pshegodskaya

Recruiting Sourcer

GitLab

Talk: Everything starts with an Issue - GitLab basics workshop

As a part of GitLab recruiting team, Anastasia is using GitLab for her daily routine tasks and that’s the common thing for each GitLab team member. She is a strong believer in people and technologies.

Sarrah Vesselov

UX Manager

GitLab

Talk: Everything starts with an Issue - GitLab basics workshop

Sarrah Vesselov is a UX Designer & Developer based in Tampa, FL. As the UX Manager for GitLab, Sarrah and her team set the overall direction of UX at GitLab from both a design and application experience perspective. Sarrah has over 10 years of web design and development experience and is the Director for Women Who Code Tampa Tampa, an organization dedicated to advancing women in technology. She holds a B.F.A in Computer Animation and an M.B.A in Marketing.

Ewa Maciaś

Senior Engineering Manager

Google

Talk: What is the cloud, why does the industry depend on the cloud these days?

Ewa Maciaś is leading a team that builds a Frontend of Google Cloud Compute. She has 10 years experience in building management consoles for developers running services on Google Infrastructructure. First, as a developer, she delivered an internal application for Google engineers, now, as a manager is building an application for external Users. She believes that even the most powerful platform can be made easy and pleasurable to consume. 

Chantel Spencer-Bowdage

Software Developer at Memrise & Tech Director

Girls in Tech London

Talk: Roles in Tech & Finding your fit

Chantel is currently working as a full stack software developer at Memrise, a London-based startup building a platform to hack the process of language learning. She is also the Technology Director of Girls in Tech London where they are organising events to encourage more women to apply for roles in tech & start their own companies. She has gained experience as a software developer, business analyst, systems analyst and cybersecurity analyst working with companies such as M&G Investments and MWR InfoSecurity. She completed her Masters of Engineering in Computer Science at the University of Southampton in 2015, and in her spare time she enjoys photography and learning Spanish.

Daria Hvížďalová

Project Manager

GoodAI

Talk: General-purpose AI: making sci-fi a reality?

Daria is a project manager at the international R&D company GoodAI, which focuses on building general-purpose artificial intelligence to automate cognitive processes in science, technology, business and other fields. Daria’s mission at GoodAI is to shape the AI ecosystem in CEE to empower research on general-purpose AI. This is done through various activities, lectures, events and projects for both research and business. One example is the General AI Challenge which will be held in Prague in August 2018. It’s an international citizen science project launched by GoodAI with $5m in prizes. Before joining GoodAI, Daria was in IT management consulting and business development in Russia, Belgium and the Czech Republic.

Eliška Čejpová

Web Developer & Organiser

Freelance & Google Developer Group Prague

Talk: Your own app in 2 hours using Rails

Eliška is a web developer who is just trying to make the world a better place. She’s one of the Google Developer Group Prague organisers, dedicated RailsGirls coach and Women Techmakers CZ Lead. Addicted to good conferences, smart people and baby carrots. Eliška currently works as a freelancer. Her networking skills are level 9000 and a half. Ask her about women in tech, Ruby or shoes.

Bára Bühnová

Assoc. Prof. at Masaryk University, Technology & Course Development Director

Czechitas

Talk: Software architecture & Smart Cities

Bára enjoys learning new things and connecting other like-minded people with different expertise. This is why she has two master’s degrees in varied fields (computer science and economics) and two doctoral degrees. She’s spent some time as a researcher in Germany and Australia (both in theoretical and applied computer science) and now enjoys being an assoc. prof. at Masaryk University, Faculty of Informatics (FI MU) in Brno.
Bára enjoys breaking stereotypes, especially when it comes to girls in tech, which is why she is the Technology and Course Development Director of the non-profit organisation Czechitas.

Petra Vaškových

Chief Product Officer

Kiwi.com

Talk: What we learned scaling the engineering teams

Petra studied Political Science but soon discovered she was more interested in new technologies, so she started working in a small tech startup. As the company grew and she became more experienced, she realised this is what she wanted to focus on. Among other things, she was responsible for the meta-search engine WhichAirline.com which was acquired by Skypicker (later Kiwi.com). Her transfer was part of the deal and she joined the company as the 4th employee. Currently, she is the Chief Product Officer, which means she’s responsible for the product’s vertical product definition and planning. She cooperates on the overall strategy of Kiwi.com and ensures that the plan is aligned with key business objectives. She leads the engineering, product management and UX teams. She’s a passionate learner, loves new challenges, travelling and exploring new places. Petra also enjoys running and reading about the latest innovations.

Laura Fernández Giménez

Co-Founder & CEO

Future Funded

Talk: The future of tech is female

Laura is the CEO and Co.Founder of FutureFunded, the first and only crowdfunding platform to train the next generation of women in tech. She is an expert in collective innovation and community building. She has been the COO of Makers of Barcelona for 5 years. She dedicates time to mentor young entrepreneurs and enjoys curating tech content for brands. Laura holds a degree in Media Studies at Universitat Ramon Llull and a postgraduate in product marketing at UB.

Jona Azizaj

FLOSS advocate

Fedora Project

Talk: Hands-on workshop on how to become an open source contributor

Jona is an open source enthusiast from Albania. Being part of Open Labs, the first hackerspace that promotes free software in Tirana, she started to contribute to open source. Since then Jona has been part of different communities including Fedora, LibreOffice, Nextcloud etc. Last year she was part of Rails Girls Summer of Code working on Nextcloud and later on she joined Collabora. She loves mentoring people to start contributing in open source, and helping communities to be inclusive and diverse.

Zuzana Maderová

Organiser of Startup Weekend Prague

Talk: Startup weekend: How to make your idea a reality in 54 hours

Zuzana is a Slovak ‘expat’ living in Prague where she moved after finishing her studies and her NGO job as the Country Manager of AIESEC. She’s been involved in the startup environment for three years. Zuzana’s first role was the Czech Country Manager of Staffino, a Slovak startup. Currently, she works as a Relationship Manager in the Czech firm Dateio. Last year, she found out through a friend about the international hackathon Startup Weekend. In their free time, they decided to bring this event in Prague. Since then, they’ve organised three hackathons, including one dedicated to improving education. They’ve also helped spread the Startup Weekend concept to other Czech cities. Thanks to the Startup Weekend they also founded a Status Quack prototype studio where they build experience-driven products with new technologies either for their clients or as internal projects. She loves doing yoga, discovering new countries & cultures and hanging out with friends.

Mariana Papcun Sekeráková

Linguistic Services Manager

Moravia

Talk: Step out of the crowd! Or when crowd becomes community

Mariana is still a newbie in one of the biggest localization companies. She joined Moravia soon after her graduation from the University of Presov where she majored in Translation and Interpreting. She dreamed about working in localization during her studies and joined Moravia as a Localization Engineer – Bugfixer. She moved on to become a Localization Lead and is now part of the Moravia Linguistic Services team. Mariana believes that being excited about your job is what drives you to succeed and tackle any project that comes your way.

Andrea Grisogono

Scrum Master and Product Owner

Appacus

Talk: The flipside of product success: Tactically leading successful teams

Andrea is a Product Manager/Consultant at web and mobile product development studio Appacus Inc. She has more than 12 years of experience in software product management, development, consulting across diverse domains including finance, audit, human resources and IT. Currently, she works with leading software and high-tech organizations in product management, product business support, business transformation and IT strategy. Andrea holds a B.S. degree in Business Management from Rochester Institute of Technology, blogs about the tech industry and is the co-organizer of ProductTank Split, Croatia. In spare time she pushes herself over the limits with free-climbing. Retreats her mind and body with exotic tastes of extra dark chocolate. 

Kateřina Gábová

HR Director

Kiwi.com

Talk: The importance of diversity & good company culture in the tech environment

Katka graduated in Finance, but she found out early on her studies that macroeconomics is a hobby, taxes and accounting are a hell and HR is her real passion. Katka has over 15 years of experience in the HR field in various roles and various industries like manufacturing, engineering & IT development, and customer support. Katka’s friends and colleagues describe her as a person who rarely stops smiling, is never angry and can handle anything. All of these qualities are really handy for her HR role at  Kiwi.com! She ensures that the company attracts and retains the best talent for its continuous growth and success while maintaining the company spirit. Katka enjoys helping people understand each other and loves connecting people with their passion; to make sure she has the energy to do so, she practices “I do not want to see any people” weekends from time to time.

Klára Výletová

QA Tester

Kiwi.com s.r.o.

Talk: Marshmallow towers

Klára started as a Customer Support agent in Kiwi.com almost 3 years ago but soon discovered her passion for IT and became a frontend tester. Without any technical background whatsoever (her major was Japanese studies), she learned how to write automatic tests and is further improving her automation skills using frontend technologies.
She enjoys being part of IT community and her activities vary from presenting at conferences to coaching girls basic programming skills.
She loves to travel, being the main reason for joining Kiwi.com, and her number one destination is Japan.

Dominika Hustinová

QA Tester

Kiwi.com

Talk: Marshmallow towers

Dominika has been a part of Kiwi.com family for almost 2 years. Starting as a Booking Agent, then helping customers at Customer Support, she found her true calling at her current position as a QA Tester while also studying Mathematical and Statistical Methods. Thanks to her science background, she is very keen on learning anything IT related. She enjoys exploring new opportunities and challenges that Kiwi.com brings her. If not analyzing data at school or Kiwi.com website at work, she loves to spend her free time playing table tennis.

Pavla Lokajová

Freelance

Talk: Pavla will guide you through the whole conference

Pavla is a writer and aspiring global journalist. In the last 4 years, she co-created and led an employer branding platform focusing on sales and young executive positions. Interviewing over 300 CEOs and visiting 300+ companies in the Czech Republic, she learnt a lot about business but felt the rising need to cover much wider human behaviour apart from entrepreneurship. As a storyteller, she is now passionate about the inter-culture exchange and promoting understanding between ethnic groups as well as millennial politics and the future of humanity, which includes tech and feminine role in its shift.

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Program

 

The order of the talks is not completely determined yet, but we're working on it. 

 

Morning

09:00 10:00
Registration

Start the morning at the registration desk and enjoy a cup of coffee before the conference starts.

Please, don’t leave the registration for the very last moment. We’d like to greet everyone with a smile, and little stress. We hope to start at 10:00 sharp.

Introduction & Welcome
10:00 10:05

We’ll briefly explain what’s planned during the day.

10:05 10:30
Katka Gábová – The importance of diversity & good company culture in the tech environment

In her talk, Katka will share why company culture and diversity matter so much. She will show how easy it is to mess a company’s culture up, but will also provide practical tips on how to avoid just that. She has plenty of experience in the tech field and lots of personal stories to share. Katka is a skilled, entertaining speaker so don’t expect any corporate jargon and HR buzzwords.

Katja Minitsenka – Mars on Earth | Making science more approachable via Google Earth
10:30 11:00

Astronomy can seem daunting at times and it’s hard to even know where to start after the simple and visceral pleasure of a clear, dark night star gazing. Lucky to Katja, NASA is literally 3 miles away from Google headquarters in Mountain View, California, so she could just walk right over and ask anything. Now looking to share her experience and knowledge, Katja will tell us about her project with NASA’s Mars Institute, Google Voyager, Street View and Brand teams. She will talk about her upcoming expedition with NASA scientists to the research Island on Earth considered most similar to Mars surface. She will talk us through the use of Google Street view technology and NASA satellite imagery to draw parallels between the two planets, what are the things on Earth that are similar to Mars and how the scientist prepare for their trip to the Red Planet. She will touch on other collaborations with NASA Google worked on and what other opportunities are in sight for future planetary scientists.

11:00 11:30
Daria Hvížďalová – General-purpose AI: making sci-fi a reality?

Spending long nights studying for exams, how many of us dreamt of a future where you just upload knowledge into your head & become superintelligent at once? While this dream brought Daria to work in artificial intelligence development, turns out no one can avoid long hours of studying – even AI. Daria will explain how the artificial intelligence is built and taught with a study curriculum (just like one we have in schools) from data that each of you generate every day. She will explain the difference between different types of AI to show why AlphaZero is not likely to be a new Terminator, and what is the benefit of generalization of AI algorithms. Also, she will further explain why at GoodAI we believe in citizen science and how the effort of every contributor can speed up the search for general artificial intelligence through General AI Challenge, AI Roadmap Institute and Human-Level AI Conference.

Ewa Maciaś – What is the cloud, why does the industry depend on the cloud these days?
11:30 12:00

Ewa Maciaś is leading a team that builds the  frontend of Google Cloud Compute. She has 10 years of experience in building management consoles for developers running services on Google Infrastructure. She believes that even the most powerful platform can be made easy and pleasurable to consume. 

12:00 13:00
Lunch & networking break

Let’s have a great lunch before we set off the afternoon session. No need to worry if you are a vegetarian or vegan, we’ll ensure you won’t go hungry.

Afternoon

13:00 13:30
Chantel Spencer-Bowdage – Roles in Tech & Finding your fit

Chantel will be presenting an overview of roles in tech – the key responsibilities, preparation & examples of the of day-to-day work that’s involved. She is the Technology Director at Girls in Tech London, where they have been running a series of talks with professionals from a wide range of tech positions to showcase different tech opportunities. She will then discuss practical steps to considering which job is right for you.

Petra Vaškových – What we learned scaling the engineering teams
13:30 14:00

Kiwi.com’s engineering headcount is 250+ people, however, the company wants to remain as flat as possible. In her talk, Petra Vaškových will explain the decision to implement the Tribe Organisational Structure and Principal Engineers Concept to maximise the effectiveness of the team.

14:00 14:30
Zuzana Maderová - Startup weekend: How to make your idea a reality in 54 hours

In her talk, Zuzka will share how she discovered the international hackathon Startup Weekend. Together with her friend, in their free time, they decided to bring this event to Prague. Since then, they’ve organised three hackathons, including one dedicated to improving education. They’ve also helped spread the Startup Weekend concept to other Czech cities.

Coffee break
14:30 15:00

Grab a cup of iced coffee and something small to eat to refresh and stay focused.

15:00 15:30
Andrea Grisogono – The flipside of product success: Tactically leading successful teams

Sophisticated software development companies use success-driven agile methodologies to obtain better results while developing strategic projects of their own or for their clients. The implementation is often apart from perfect and reoccurring problems lead to disbelief in the processes. In her talk, Andrea will show how to manage a product by applying an effective strategic plan, and then take responsibility for executing that plan while balancing the span of Product Manager’s responsibilities. 

Mariana Papcun Sekeráková – Step out of the crowd! Or when crowd becomes community.
15:30 16:00

The localization industry is built and dependent on flexible thinking and reliable cooperation with linguistic resources who aim to deliver quality. Mariana will be talking about reaching out to crowds of resources to unite them under a common goal and create an active translation community.

16:00 16:30
Stephanie New – Why you should focus on skill building

There is a common phrase thrown around the tech world: Move fast and break things. In this talk, we will challenge this notion. Moving fast may have great short term results but can also cause long term issues. This talk argues for focusing on building skills instead of speedy task completion in order to produce results at a higher quality, which helps you move faster in the long term. 
In her talk, Stephanie will share a framework that she uses to build the ‘right’ thing the first time: visualizing the end state of a project. This high leverage process can be applied to engineering/ops, design, and product. 
Also, she will introduce some of the key skills that have made her successful in her career.

Coffee Break
16:30 17:00

Grab a cup of iced coffee and something small to eat to refresh and stay focused.

17:00 17:30
Bára Bühnová - Software architecture & Smart Cities

Bára focuses on advanced technologies for the cities of the future, as well as software architectures and critical infrastructure design. In the talk, she will share a bit of her enthusiasm for these topics and explain what makes them so appealing to her. She will also touch upon the role of technology in the future, and the fun and enjoyable part of conquering it (with Czechitas).

Laura Fernández Giménez – The future of tech is female
17:30 18:00

We will need 217 years to close the gender gap according to the World Economic Forum. In her talk Laura will focus on:

  • What are some of the facts that have brought us to this situation
  • What’s the real and positive impact women have in the world
  • What can we do to attract more women into tech departments and companies
  • Why we should all act now!
18:00 18:30
Lightning Talks

Would you like to have a lightning talk? Great! Let us know during the registration and we’ll let you on stage.

Afterparty

18:30 00:00
Afterparty & Networking at Morgal

For the afterparty, we’ll meet at the atrium of Morgal (about 50 meters from Scala). There you will have a chance to meet the speakers and have a talk with other participants. You can look forward to a DJ and at 22:30 you can leave for Moravské náměstí to watch the last firework show of this year’s Ignis Brunensis.

There will be some evening snacks at the party too. Morgal will prepare a cold buffet and Kristina will provide pastries and cakes. 

Morning

10:00 12:00
Speaker Lorem ipsum

Would you like to have a lightning talk? Great! Let us know during the registration and we’ll let you on stage. 

Lorem ipsum
12:00 13:00

Would you like to have a lightning talk? Great! Let us know during the registration and we’ll let you on stage. 

12:00 12:00
Lorem ipsum

Would you like to have a lightning talk? Great! Let us know during the registration and we’ll let you on stage. 

Afternoon

12:00 13:00
Lorem ipsum

Would you like to have a lightning talk? Great! Let us know during the registration and we’ll let you on stage. 

Afterparty

13:00 14:00
Lorem ipsum

Would you like to have a lightning talk? Great! Let us know during the registration and we’ll let you on stage. 

Workshops

In the morning, you will have the chance to sign up for one of the following workshops. 

 

11:05 11:50
Everything starts with an Issue - GitLab basics workshop

by Anastasia Pshegodskaya & Sarrah Vesselov from GitLab

If you are planning to attend this workshop, please, bring a laptop.

This time has come! We’re using software products each day at our workplaces regardless of the industry we’re working for. But does this mean you need to become familiar with developer tools and programming to succeed at your job?
As a part of GitLab recruiting team, Anastasia is using GitLab for her daily routine tasks and that’s the common thing for each GitLab team member. During this workshop, Anastasia will share her story of coming to IT industry with a non-technical background and getting along with Git.
Right after that Sarrah Vesselov will guide you through the main GitLab functionalities.
In this session you will learn about:

  • What does Git mean and how you can use it
  • How does GitLab increase transparency by using its own product
  • How does everyone can contribute regardless their previous background
  • The basics of Git and GitLab: registering your account and making your first commits
Marshmallow towers
14:05 14:55

by Klára Výletová & Dominika Hustinová, QA Testers at Kiwi.com 

When you work in IT, you have to communicate with other people every day. Doesn’t matter if you are a project manager and need to manage group of people towards your goals or a developer who from time to time needs to tell their boss why they couldn’t do things the way boss wants them to. Come build sweet stuff out of marshmallows and learn the art of communication and cooperation along the way. This workshop can help you to be more comfortable with advocating your goals and standing behind your opinions! You will be walked through this workshop by QA Testers from Kiwi.com – Klára and Dominika.

14:55 15:55
Hands-on workshop on how to become an open source contributor

by Jona Azizaj, FLOSS advocate at Red Hat

If you are planning to attend this workshop, please, bring a laptop.

Are you ready to be an open source contributor but you don’t know where to start or what tools to use? 

In this workshop, Jona will cover:
+ what open source is: where it came from and what makes it important
+ why to contribute to open source, and the many ways to contribute
+ using IRC to get help and talk to other project contributors
+ opportunities: such as Outreachy, Google Summer of Code and Rails Summer of Code

During the session, you will have a hands-on experience with all of the common tools used to contribute to open source projects and you will be ready to go out and contribute to your first project. Together, you’ll wrap up the resources so that you can continue to practice and ways to find good projects and opportunities (such as paid internships/scholarships) for new contributors. 

Your own app in 2 hours using Rails
16:00 18:00

by Eliška Čejpová, freelancer and GDG organizer

If you are planning to attend this workshop, please, bring a laptop.

Tickets

Tickets include access to the all-day program, refreshments, lunch and the afterparty!

Early Bird

18.4. - 21.5.

390 CZK

Standard Ticket

22.5. - 11.6.

490 CZK

Late Ticket

12.6. - 16.6.

590 CZK

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Organisers

Partners

Main media partner

Media partners

Contact

Let us know if you want to be a speaker or support us in any way.

Send your questions and comments to our event coordinator Irena Pláteníková.

FAQ

Who should attend?

Young professionals, students, and anyone interested in the topic.

What language will the event be held in?

English.

I need accommodation, where can I stay? 

We recommend staying at Hotel Continental, Holiday Inn, and Hostel Mitte. If you let them know you are in Brno for the Forum on Women in Tech, they will provide you with discount.

Can I register during the day?

Yes, you can. The registration will be open the whole day for those who want to join later. 

Do you provide discounts?

Yes, we do. We have special discounts for students, NGOs, and our partners. If you want to get a student discount or want to become one of our partners, please contact Irena Pláteníkova.

Why did you organise this event?

To provide a platform for women who have reached the top in an industry traditionally dominated by men to speak and share their experiences.

Why "Glass Ceiling Not Found"? 

To raise awareness for the barrier women and minorities face in professional advancement. And then break it. 

Venue

We’re expecting you on 16 June 2018 at the Scala Cinema in Brno