Government launches £1m fund to support diversity in tech

Written by Sam Trendall on 28 August 2018 in News
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Money to be used to encourage public and third sector and businesses to work together to promote a more diverse digital workforce

Credit: Alpha Stock Images/Nick Youngson/CC BY-SA 3.0

The government has launched a £1m fund to help increase the diversity of the UK’s technology workforce.

The Digital Skills Innovation Fund will be awarded over the coming months to “to help women, disabled people, people from minority backgrounds or those living in lower socioeconomic areas to succeed in digital roles”, the government said.

The money will be used to invest in programmes designed to “address local skills challenges” in a way that fosters cooperation between Local Enterprise Partnerships, businesses, charities, community groups, training organisations, and local councils. Funding will be doled out via a handful of grants of between £200,000 and £500,000. Applications for the fund are open until 28 October.


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Alongside the diversity funding, the government has also launched a £400,000 Digital Inclusion Fund “to help older and disabled people acquire digital skills”. 

This money, which will be administered by digital inclusion charity Citizens Online, will be invested in projects that help people get to grips with daily tasks such as using mobile messaging apps, booking GP appointments online, and using search engines.

Minister for Digital Margot James said: “It is crucial everyone is able to take advantage of digital technology, whether it is to learn how to use the internet or develop the skills to work in a tech role. If we want to maintain our position as a world-leading digital economy we need to work with industry, local authorities and the voluntary sector to develop solutions so no-one is left behind.”

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Sam Trendall is editor of PublicTechnology

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