About Us

As the official society for Gender Minorities in Informatics at the University of Edinburgh, our goal is to cultivate an open community with the aim to provide a supportive and inclusive society where people are comfortable and can build both technical and networking skills to thrive in the tech environment.

We differ from other socities at the University of Edinburgh in that every woman, transgender and non-binary person studying or working at the School of Informatics is automatically a member of Hoppers, so there is no need to become a member or to pay a subscription fee!

Photo of Jane Hillston
Jane Hillston, 2020
Head of School of Informatics

As Karen Spärck Jones said, in her acceptance of the Lovelace Award in 2009, "Computing is too important to be left to men"! I would say that it is also too important to be left to women. The key point is that we are stronger when we work together and research has shown that diverse teams achieve better results. However, we should not under-estimate the value of initiatives such as Hoppers that create a supportive environment that allow gender minority members of the School to develop their skills, confidence and friendship so that they are ready to fully participate in diverse teams.


Photo of Gosia Borowiec
Gosia Borowiec, 2020
Hoppers President 2019/20

With approximately 600 members, ranging from first year to PhD students, we are one of the largest communities in the School of Informatics. Hoppers has been active for almost 15 years. The society has been created by a group of female teaching staff as part of the School in order to empower the women working or studying in the field.

We partner with top tier companies and start-ups, such as Google, Amazon and Modulr, to provide our members with the best learning opportunities and networks to build a future career. Because Informatics is a broad subject with potential both in research and industry, we are trying to diversify our events as much as possible. In order to do so, we organize at least two technical talks or workshops each month - some of the past ones include interview bootcamps, workshops on building a personal website or workshops about blockchain. Our two biggest events of the year are Ada Lovelace Day hosted in October, and the International Womens Day hosted in March. This year the IWD event will be even bigger and more special - our Society is celebrating its 15th anniversary and we have prepared a day full of interesting talks, workshops and fun challenges.

To facilitate building a community, we also make sure to organize social events. We start off each academic year with a Welcome Lunch for our new and current members to put the emphasis on the fact that everyone is welcomed in our community and to give new students the opportunity to meet new friends and seek advice right from the beginning of their university journey. We also offer a range of different activities for our members throughout the year, such as bowling, ice skating or mini golf.

The School of Informatics has offered amazing support to promote more tech opportunities to our members and to help them thrive. Hopefully, we will be able to get more and more women interested in Tech through our work.