Who’s in charge here anyway? Read all about it! We are a steering committee made up of both academic and industry professionals (some of us wear both hats!) inspired to help break down the barriers women and men find when it comes to computer games. If you’d like more information or would like to contribute in some way, please send an email to inquiries +at+ womeningames.com
Organiser, WiG 2008 & Steering Committee
Nicola is a Senior Software Engineer at Rare Ltd, a Microsoft Games Studio. She has worked on Kameo and Viva Piñata, two first party games for the Xbox 360. She has over 4 years experience of working in the games industry, and 11+ years in IT companies. She is a Computer Science graduate of Warwick University. As one of very few female games programmers, she would like to encourage more school age girls to consider it as a career.
Organiser, WiG 2010
Marian teaches Games Development and is Course Tutor at Bradford College, she has recently completed an MSc in Informatics linked to women and the games industry and is currrently beginning a PhD in the same area. Since beginning teaching games development in 2007, Marian has become very aware of the lack of females entering the profession; a lack that she hopes to address through her own research and support of WiG.
Organiser, WiG 2010
Kaye is the Lecturer in Computer Games at the University of Bradford and is the Course Leader for their BA Graphics for Games and BSc Interactive Systems and Video Game Design courses. Kaye’s background is in game development where she spent over 12 years working as an artist, lead artist and art manager for companies including Infogrames, Sony and Blitz Games Studios. Kaye has worked on titles as diverse as the Premier Manager series, the Bratz series and most recently the Encleverment Experiment, and is committed to raising awareness of game development as a viable career for women.
Founder, Organiser WiG 2005 and Steering Committee
Mark is a Principal Lecturer in the Department of Creative Technologies, University of Portsmouth. He is course leader for two undergraduate game courses and also took MSc Computer Games Technology through validation. He set up the Advanced Games Research Group at the University of Portsmouth and was the founder of Women in Games. He is currently researching ambient games. Before joining the university Mark spent 23 years working as a designer, producer and manager in the games industry (Quicksilva, Rebellion, Sega, Electronic Arts etc). He also wrote scripts for 2000 AD and Sonic the Comic. Mark lives in Southampton with his wife Caroline and his two boys, Joe and Tom.
Sheri Graner Ray
Sheri Graner Ray has been in the game industry since 1990. She has worked as a designer and producer for such companies as Electronic Arts, Origin Systems, Sony Online Entertainment and Cartoon Network. She is author of the book, “Gender Inclusive Game Design-Expanding the Market” and is the game industry’s leading expert on gender and computer games. In 2005 she was awarded the IGDA’s Game Developer’s Choice Award for her work in gender and games and she is currently serving as the chair of Women In Games International; an organization she co-founded.
Organiser, WiG 2008
Sara has been a Lecturer and Associate Professor in Computer Science at the University of Warwick for 12 years, and has taught various aspects of software development, from language semantics, compiler design, and concurrency. With a PhD from the University of California, Davis, her interest in games is particularly from the point of view of program development and efficiency of code.
Helen W. Kennedy is Senior Lecturer and MA Award Leader in the School of Cultural Studies at the University of the West of England. She has published on the subject of feminist readings of Lara Croft, female Quake players and game studies more generally. She has recently completed (with Jon Dovey) a book entitled Game Cultures which was published in May 2006. She is Chair of the Play Research Group within the School which has organised a number of international conferences and symposia on the subject of computer games generally as well as serving on the steering committee for Women In Games which has organised four international conferences in the UK since 2004. Helen is also elected member of the executive committee of the Digital Games Research Association (DiGRA).
Aphra is a Lecturer in the Department of Sociology at the National University of Ireland at Maynooth. She lectures both undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the area of media and technology in everyday life and her research is focussed on digital game production and consumption. She is an academic member of the Irish chapter of the International Game Development Association and established and runs the community website www.gamedevelopers.ie. She was a founding member of the Digital Games Research Association (DiGRA) and became involved in Women in Games in 2005 following research into the gendered structure of the games industry and public play spaces. She recently published ‘The Business and Culture of Digital Games: Gamework/Gameplay‘ with Sage publications and a number of book chapters and journal articles on games.
Aphra previously worked as a post-doctoral research fellow at the Centre for Media Research at the University of Ulster and at the Centre for Society, Technology and Media at Dublin City University. She has also previously worked as a freelance photographer. She lives in Dublin.
Aleks Krotoski is a columnist for The Guardian’s Technology section and for Guardian Unlimited, where she writes about the social dimensions of interactive entertainment, emerging community experiences in virtual worlds and other aspects of social software. She writes about broader dimensions of social computing for MIT Technology Review, the BBC and Virgin Media.
She is currently working towards a PhD in social psychology at the University of Surrey, examining the social networks of cyberspace. In particular, she is interested in understanding online social influence, and how information diffuses through online populations.
As a digital strategy consultant, Aleks has written policy, government and industry reports covering media regulation, technological forecasting, women in games, age ratings, education and game industry regulation; she also regularly speaks about interpersonal processes in online communities with financial, telecommunications and governmental organisations.
I am a Partner in the Litigation Practice at Harbottle & Lewis LLP which is one of the leading law firms in the United Kingdom in the computer games industry. We deal with a full range of legal and commercial issues in relation to all forms of interactive entertainment, primarily computer and video games.As one of the few female lawyers in the video games industry, I attended the inaugural “Women In Games” at the University of Portsmouth giving a short talk on alternative methods of resolving disputes other than litigation. I left the conference very enthusiastic by what I had seen and heard and as a result of this joined the steering committee shortly thereafter. As a lawyer who advises in respect of disputes in the video games industry, it is important for me to keep up with developments therein and my involvement on the steering committee gives me an opportunity to do this and also to meet other people (both men and women) in the industry.
Organiser, WiG 2006, Steering Committee
Maggie is the first Fine Artist (Digital) to be accepted onto the University of Teesside’s School of Computing PhD programme, and is part of the SpIDERS research studio, an interdisciplinary team of computer scientists, artists and psychologists at the University of Teesside who are particularly interested in analysing computer games, and is currently completing her thesis. She is investigating the notion of relaxation using Interactive Computer Game Environments.
Previously employed in the banking and accounting compaines, she became the Director of a limited company, then decided to completely change her direction and returned to education, obtaining a First Class Honours Degree in Art and Design at the University of Sunderland . After gaining her Post Graduate Diploma in Fine Art, she then completed a Masters Degree in Creative Multimedia at the University of Teesside , which re-ignited her interest in 3d modelling software, and the possibilities of artistic uses of virtual game environments.
As well as her PhD research work, Maggie is also the creator and curator of the Greig Gallery, part of the School of Computing at the University of Teesside , showcasing both computer game industry concept art work and student produced work. She completed a Senior Fellowship with Digital City , creating a virtual game environment, which led to a Microsoft sponsored trip to the Women in Games Conference in Austin , Texas.
Achieving international success exhibiting her work in galleries and alternative art spaces, she is now combining both artistic and empirical methodologies to research mechanisms of self & identity when interacting with virtual computer game environments. Could a computer game environment be used to relax and seduce the player, inducing a feeling of meditation and relaxation?
Organiser, WiG 2008
Jane is an Associate Professor in Computer Science at the University of Warwick. Previously she taught at the Open University. Her interests include Formal Methods and Computer Security and she is the author of a widely used undergraduate textbook on the Z notation. She has a keen interest in the issue of Women in Computing. As the mother of teenage children (one male, one female) she has extensive observational experience of games from the user end!
Organiser, WiG 2007, Steering Committee
Emma Westecott is currently Research Fellow at the University of Wales, Newport and part of the Synergy research group. She achieved recognition for working closely with Douglas Adams as producer for the best-selling Starship Titanic (1998, Simon & Schuster). Since then, Emma has built up a reputation for developing original as well as popular projects and products.Emma has been invited to present her vision and philosophy at many prestigious venues including BAFTA and the Tate. Most recently she directed the Zero Game studio for The Interactive Institute in Sweden, where an impressive body of work was created under her leadership. Emma is the organiser of the 2007 Women in Games conference and is currently working on a PhD on the Performance of Play.