Female game developers in the Australian digital games industry

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Females make up half the population, and represent 47% of the digital game player market in Australia, yet women do not have comparative input and influence into the creation of digital games. Women are underrepresented in the digital games industry all over the world. In Australia, women’s level of contribution to game development is much lower than the USA, Canada, and UK. This thesis seeks to establish the factors that influence the low participation of women in this fast-growing industry, and to possibly find ways to reverse this trend. Design/methodology/approach – A review of literature from the areas of computer science, IT, and digital games development was carried out focusing on the impact of social, structural and cultural factors, and how these may influence women choosing a career in the Australian digital games industry. This study is empirical in nature using a Mixed-Method Grounded Theory approach. A database of all known Australian digital game companies was constructed. A census was then carried out with 356 digital game development studios across the country. From there, a separate “Aussie Women Game Developers” survey was conducted with thirty-five women working in the industry. From the survey respondents a subset of ten women participated in a semi-structured, in-depth, one-on-one, open-ended interview.
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