hacking women into tech

innovation kitchen

Designing a one-day intervention program to prevent the adoption of negative socio-cultural norms within tech working environments.

hacking women into tech

Choose a language for the article:

About the project

The project was born thanks to the Hackathon Hacking Women into Tech, organized by Human Capital Topsectoren, in collaboration with several relevant partners in the Brainport region and beyond. During the hackathon our group became more and more aware of the main issues related to gendered socio-cultural norms in STEM* work contexts, that influence the well-being of people. These socio-cultural norms include, for example, stereotypical comments, gender-identity threats and exclusion. As a consequence, these norms constrain workers’ (mostly women but also men) career perceptions and impose barriers to building their career confidence and engagement in STEM.

Our project aims to create awareness and empathy among co-workers, by creating immersive experiences that highlight these socio-cultural norms, and by facilitating dialogue and reflection with regards to the adoption of such norms.

*Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics


The concept

Our one-day intervention program can be considered a balanced mix between team-building activities and gender-inclusion trainings. Our intervention, despite the name, aims to prevent the adoption of harmful socio-cultural norms, rather than rehabilitating workers into their working environment, after an unpleasant episode.

Our team strongly believes that the first step for the adoption of positive socio-cultural norms is the ability to understand each-others and the effect that such norms have on confidence and engagement in the workplace. For this reason, the intervention focuses on the creation of empathy among co-workers, using analogue and digital games. In particular, physical games are used to analyse the behaviour of a team in work-like situations such as complex, timed, tasks that require collaborative effort, but also leadership, manual work and technical skills. Digital games use VR and AR experiences to create an immersive environment in which it becomes easier to step in the shoes of your teammates.

  • The analysis and reflection moments are guided by experienced personal and professional identity coaches, as well as team-leaders, HR experts and researchers.
  • The day is concluded with a constructive training that aims to the personal identification of small behavioural goals, to be implemented in the coming period.
  • Together with the team is possible to schedule a second experience, to review the effectiveness of the training and identify possible corrective actions, or to set new goals.

We need you

Does your company value gender-equality on the working field and you would like to take concrete, immediately-applicable steps towards gender-equality? Are you looking for a new enriching experience to strengthen your team’s wellbeing and abilities? Sign up to have a chat with our team and evaluate the participation to our pilot by sending us a message! Click here to connect.

Want to know more?

Read further about how our project was born and our proposition.


Stella & Lise