We, as a team, were thinking about some of the challenges we personally experienced as women in the work place from past internships and in school working on group projects. All of us have experienced some form of derogatory language or lack of opportunity from managers constantly constantly cutting us off and calling us "sweetie" to guys in our class saying "she only got that internship because she's a girl and she's a 'diversity hire'". We struggled to figure out how to properly report or discuss these situations and only further felt the feelings of imposter syndrome.
We really wished there was some tool during these situations that helped highlight these issues to create a more inclusive space and also provided resources or help to those victimized.
Thus, we decided to build that tool.
What it does
There are two aspects of our tool - 1) helping change the culture in unsafe spaces to become more inclusive and 2) providing resources to minorities / underprivileged in unsafe spaces
First, we are a monitoring tool that converts speech to text during meetings, club working spaces etc. We then analyzed that text to detect behaviors that were not inclusive. For example, we can detect if certain people are monopolizing the conversation and not letting others speak or if there were inappropriate/derogatory terms used.
We then compile and show visualizations of the anonymized data in a report that highlights common inappropriate behaviors amongst folks in that space. This report is to then be sent to the HR of a company or the advisor of a club so that they can specifically understand how the culture of their space can be improved and focus and personalize the inclusivity trainings to their employees / students to key target issues.
In order to help the victim, if they choose to opt in, we then send them stories of minorities who have had similar experiences and resources that have helped them or how they solved some of their issues. We collect these anonymized stories of minorities through a mission called the Empowerment Project, where anyone can tell their story, submit resources, or solutions.
How I built it
We created a website that explains our team, mission, product offerings, as well as hosts the Empower Project form. We then store the results of the google form data to Firebase, Google's database. We then send the victim an email that shows her women who have experienced similar situations by comparing company, description, and how they labeled the experience.
Challenges I ran into
We've never used Google's Cloud Platform before and it was a little difficult connecting the different pieces that we were working on from firebase to the speech to text API to the google form to the data visualization tools. However, in the end we were able to create a functioning prototype with all these different aspects of Google Cloud combined.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We are super proud of working on a creative solution for women in the workplace. We found that there was a lot of programs and mentorship opportunities growing for minorities in technology but not many programs target some of the pain points of women already in tech but are going through imposter syndrome,
We're also super proud that we thought of our team as a company with a social good mission statement but also products/services that we could make revenue off and sustain. We also thought of the different personas / stakeholders involved in the situation - from the company / organization to the HR / Advisor roles to the victim.
What I learned
We learned how to think like a startup, think about different perspectives, split up responsibilities and work together as a team trying new software and API's.
What's next for SafeSpace
Moving forward, we would love to think about more enhanced dashboards, improving the ML / AI of recommendations for victims and helping create the training toolsets and resources for HR to present to improve the culture of their spaces.