Screenshot: AllRaise.org

All Raise, a nonprofit that aims to boost gender diversity in tech and venture capital, is launching a speakers' bureau designed to get more women and non-binary people on stage at technology and business conferences.

Why it matters: All too often, tech conferences are dominated by male speakers and all-male panels — or "manels." By one estimate, only 25% of tech conference speakers are women. And while conferences have shifted online, the gender and race dynamics haven't changed.

Details: The group says it already has more than 1,000 founders, investors and operating executives in its "Visionary Voices" database and aims to recruit more.

  • It's also looking for conference organizers and media organizations that want to partner in the effort.

The big picture: It's more than just gender balance. According to a report from tech services firm Ensono, 68% of tech conference speakers are white men, with women of color making up just 14% of keynote speakers.

What they're saying: There's a big role for men to play too in solving the problem, All Raise CEO Pam Kostka told Axios.

  • Kostka said men who are invited to speak at a conference should press organizers on the event's diversity and who is speaking, insist on being part of a gender-balanced panel and also consider recommending someone else from an underrepresented group.
  • "Male allies are an extremely important part of this given that they currently hold the microphone," Kostka said.

Go deeper

Oscars details new diversity requirements for Best Picture nominees

An Oscar Statue is displayed at the 92nd Annual Academy Awards Governors Ball in Hollywood, California. Photo: Valerie Macon/AFP via Getty Images

The Oscars will undergo sweeping eligibility reforms, with Best Picture category nominees required to meet specific representation standards from the 2024 Academy Awards onwards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Tuesday night.

Why it matters: The move is in response to years of criticism that the Academy is too male and too white. "The standards are designed to encourage equitable representation on and off screen in order to better reflect the diversity of the movie-going audience," the Academy said in a statement.

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