As tech leaders rally against President Donald Trump's immigration executive order, a new report released Wednesday by the nonprofit Open Mic shows there is a striking lack of diversity in the tech industry. The low diversity in the tech industry undermines financial performance, the report Breaking the Mold: Investing in Racial Diversity in Tech also found. Open MIC, which advocates for a more vibrant and diverse media, found African-Americans, Latinos and Native Americans are underrepresented in the tech industry by 16 to 18 percentage points compared to the overall U.S. workforce. The nonprofit released a chart breaking down racial diversity of the workforce in major tech companies, including Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook and Twitter. Non-white individuals are widely excluded from executive level positions, are less likely to get promoted and are paid less than their white counterparts, the report shows.
Google released its annual workforce diversity report Thursday, marking only modest changes from last year. The company remains mostly white and male. But the report offers a better view of what the workforce looks like as the company revealed its gender breakdown across ethnicities for the first time. Overall, Google's global workforce is 69.1 percent male and 30.9 percent female, virtually unchanged from 2017. In its breakdown on race and ethnicity, which covers only U.S. employees, 2.5 percent of Googlers are black/African American, up from 2.4 percent in 2017.
The ACLU and other groups urged Amazon to halt selling facial recognition technology to law enforcement departments. Lending tools charge higher interest rates to Hispanics and African Americans. Job hunting tools favor men. Negative emotions are more likely to be assigned to black men's faces than white men. Computer vision systems for self-driving cars have a harder time spotting pedestrians with darker skin tones.
The workforce that develops artificial intelligence products is in "a diversity crisis," says a new report. As a result, algorithms behind the technology are usually biased themselves. According to Discriminating Systems, a report from NYU's AI Now Institute, the employees of companies building AI solutions are, as in most of the technology sector, largely male and white. At Google, for example, women comprise just 10 percent of the AI research staff while the company's overall workforce is just 2.5 percent black. Facebook and Microsoft don't do much better: 4 percent of their employees are black, the report said.
Google released its annual diversity report today and though strides have been made in some areas, in others, the company has shown little improvement. Globally, Google is 69.1 percent male and in the US 53.1 percent of the workforce is white, 36.3 percent is Asian, 3.6 percent is Latinx, 2.5 percent is black and 0.3 percent is Native American. Compared to last year, the biggest gains were made in the representation of Asian employees, which increased from 34.7 percent. But the percentage of women in Google's workforce as well as the representation of black and Latinx individuals saw hardly any change, increasing just 0.1 percentage point over the year. In regards to hiring, Google did have some successes.