The Thought Lab

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Pride in Tech: Amplifying the voices of the LGBTQIA+ community – 13 July

July 13 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

It’s June, which can only mean one thing, it’s Pride Month! Join us for another meaningful panel discussion, this time looking at the role that technology has played in amplifying the voices of the LGBTQIA+ community. The panel will look at how technology has allowed for more awareness and acceptance within the community; helping combat isolation, developing community groups and providing education to help shine a light on important issues for both the community and allies.

Join the panel discussion (6 PM GMT+1):

Join the virtual networking (7 PM GMT+1):

Key discussion points include:
• The impact on virtual and physical life
• Contribution to queer culture
• Enhancing safety
• The importance of allyship
• Provides visual representation
• How technology can foster communities and promote inclusivity
• How tech organisations can raise awareness

Technology has the ability to reshape the world and create positive change. You can expect a forward-thinking and uplifting discussion. Join us to celebrate Pride and to find out how to be more inclusive.

Our panel:
– Antonia Otter (she/her) – Host and Chair @ SODA Social
– Emre Celik (he/him) – Employee Relations Partner @ Google
– Jana Sloan van Geest (she/her) – Senior Writer and People Manager @ Wooga
– Leon Witzel (he/him) – PhD Student
– Santiago Canepa (he/him) – Senior Software Engineer @ Microsoft
– Dean Corbett (he/him) – Chief People Officer @ Avado

Emre Celik
Emre is an Employee Relations Partner at Google. In his role, Emre looks after the well-being of Google’s employees – investigating possible discrimination, harassment and other workplace disputes where viewpoints have hardened. Emre supports different local LGBTQ+ NGOs with career sessions, donation events and educational work. His focus areas are LGBTQ+ youth education and educational work in soccer.

Jana Sloan van Geest
Jana is a Senior Writer and People Manager at mobile development studio Wooga in Berlin. Prior to joining Wooga, she worked on game titles such as Assassin’s Creed Origins, Battlestar Galactica: Squadrons, and Horizon Zero Dawn: The Frozen Wilds. She is the founder of the Pixelles Game Writing Incubator, a specialized training program for women in the field of video game writing.

Leon Witzel
Leon is a spatial visionary, psycho-social advisor and trained hiking guide. For more than 15 years he has been fighting for the rights, emancipation and empowerment of the LGBTIQ+ community (mostly in Germany) especially with an intersectional focus on trans people. Leon is a qualified geographer and is currently working on his PhD thesis. He often looks forward to his green balcony and his two rescued cats after trans activist contexts.

Santiago Canepa
Santiago Canepa is a Senior Software Engineer in the Commercial Software Engineering (CSE) team at Microsoft. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion are important to Santiago and Microsoft CSE as a whole, with the focus on efforts being ingrained into the team culture and not an ‘add-on’. Santiago is an active member of CSE’s Ambassador Program, a volunteer effort to improve visibility and celebrate the tech contributions and personal stories of diverse individuals.

Dean Corbett
Dean is Chief People Officer at Avado, a tech-enabled learning provider of apprenticeships, professional qualifications and organisation-wide development programmes across agility, data, digital, people and marketing. As Executive facilitator of Avado’s culture of success and belonging, Dean works with all Avado people to co-create the experiences that Avado people have of working there. As part of his focus on the overall Avado people plan, diversity, inclusion and belonging have begun to underpin the overall culture of the company, and this is brought to life through education, awareness-raising, and ongoing, radically open conversations across the business.


July 13
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Online Event


Soda Social

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