300 participants attended the third biennial Creating Connections conference from May 10 to 11, 2013 at UBC. The event featured a wide range of topics on gender diversity. Attendees engaged in meaningful dialogue about the participation of women in science, engineering and technology through interactive workshops, networking sessions and keynote speeches.
Beyond networking, community building, and access objectives, the conference was also used as a case study to determine how effective this type of activity can be at improving occupational self-efficacy – a strong predictor of career persistence – and whether we can effect a measurable change in someone’s awareness of the value of gender diversity in the technical workplace.
The Creating Connections 2013 conference resulted in immediate, statistically significant (P<<0.001) positive changes for both participant’s occupational self-efficacy (indicating career persistence), and their awareness of the value of gender diversity. A six month follow-up suggested that a change in awareness of the value of gender diversity was sustained (P<0.05), but self‑efficacy changes did not persist.
The Creating Connections 2013 Final Report has more detailed information.