THE BLOG

We Need More Digital Angels

29/08/2014 14:51 BST | Updated 28/10/2014 09:59 GMT

While the Electoral Reform Society despair at the ever-expanding House of Lords, I am delighted at the addition of seven new female peers. David Cameron is bringing young, tech-friendly women into the House of Lords; they have been dubbed Dave's Digital Angels in some parts.

This can only encourage young, female, tech-savvy entrepreneurs, like myself. The fields of technology, digital marketing and web design are still male-heavy. Advertising, too. It is estimated that women control 80 per cent of the purchasing power, yet only 3 per cent of Creative Directors are women, meaning that consciously or not, agencies continue to market almost exclusively to men.

I'm proud to say there are many digital angels in Bournemouth - the tide is turning here on the coast. At next month's Silicon Beach conference at the Pavillion, 30% of the speakers will be female.

In the run-up to the event, there's also a workshop aimed exclusively at digital angels. 'She Who Dares, Wins' features two illustrious keynote speakers: Debbie Klein, CEO of Engine and recently named Women of the Year at the SheSaysUK Awards; and Diane Young, founder of The Drum, MD of RAR and recently named Digital Innovator of the Year at the PPA Awards. Their words of wisdom will be followed by a Q&A segment, where the panel will be made up of Bournemouth's brightest and best lady bosses, including Arabella Lewis-Smith, founder & MD of Salad Creative and Michelle Davies, Client Service Director at Bright Blue Day.

What's more, if you position Silicon Beach and Silicon Beach+ alongside the area having the World's Largest Open Device Lab, WordCampUK in Bournemouth in July, All About Peoples, Re:Develop in August too, ThinkCreateDo, the two well-respected universities and a myriad of award-winning agencies, Bournemouth is emerging as a creative and digital hotspot to rival Brighton or Bristol. And we have a beach, too!

Certainly, Arabella, of Salad Creative, believes this area is the perfect environment for creatives in the tech and media industries. "Our office overlooks Poole Harbour," Arabella said. "You can't get much more idyllic than that!"

So will Dave's next batch of Digital Angels come from Bournemouth? Hey, I may be only 35 but I'm ready for my robes. Suit me up, Dave.