Project Description

Hacking Our Way Into Advanced Technology: A Micro-Hackathon

Monday, Oct. 15 2018
3:30 PM
Session Length: 60 Min


“Hacking Our Way into Advanced Technology” is a micro-hackathon engaging MBEs and diversity experts in the NMSDC community to map out a path to full inclusion in tomorrow’s supply chains.

All of us understand the value of economic development, collaboration, and believe diverse groups and ideation are imperative to ongoing business success.

Corporate spend is rapidly shifting toward emerging and advanced technologies in the realms of artificial intelligence, internet of things, electric grid modernization, battery storage, 3D manufacturing, data analytics, robotics, augmented reality and much more.

All industries, from retail to health care to manufacturing to energy are revolutionizing the design, production and delivery of products and services using emerging and advanced technologies.

Driverless cars, 3D printed buildings, customized health care, robotic service providers and production accelerators are everyday news, BUT the MBE community seems to be missing.

How many of us are included in the cutting edge of corporate R&D, think-tanks, development labs, pilot projects, RFIs? Are MBES on the bid lists for energy storage, cloud computing, data analytics? Are they listed as significant subcontractors in proposals for electric vehicles and charging stations, renewable energy innovations?

The goal of this workshop is to discover hacks to advance MBE participation in emerging technology and to evolve supplier diversity engagement from bolted-on after thoughts to an integral part of cutting-edge ideation, R&D, production and implementation. Supplier Diversity and MBEs must be fully engaged in emerging and advanced technology. BUT HOW?????

Together, Pacific Gas and Electric Company and DDB Worldwide Communications Group, MBEs and corporate supplier diversity allies will hack breakthroughs by tackling the following:

1. Where are the opportunities?
2. Where are MBEs currently participating in these opportunities? Where they are not participating, are there competitive MBEs?
3. What is needed for successful MBEs to embrace new technologies to grow their business or remain competitive?
4. Supplier diversity is new to many Fortune 500 advanced technology companies. How do we help them to mature their supplier diversity
5. How can tech companies integrate MBEs into cutting edge initiatives from cradle to grave?
6. How do we change the stereotype and/or bias that MBEs do not bring value to these new endeavors?

Registration is required for this team activity by Thursday, October 11th. Creative groups will be formed to include expertise in technology, diversity, marketing, leadership, etc.  We will send out the hacks one week prior to the workshop. The groups will meet for one hour during the conference and virtually invest an additional three hours through February 2019.

Upon completion, we will deliver micro-strategy toolkits for both MBEs and diversity advocates.

Sponsored by:
Pacific Gas & Electric 


Joan Kerr
Director of Supplier Chain Responsibility

Dawn Fitch-Mitchell
Director of Diversity
DDB Worldwide

Regina Scolaro
Digital Director
DDB Worldwide