Catch Up with the Drupal Community at DrupalSouth Sydney 2024!

DrupalSouth is back in Australia at the majestic Sydney Masonic Centre.

DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 is shaping up as a major event in the community calendar. It is returning to Australia with expectations of over 300 attendees. The event, hosted at the iconic Sydney Masonic Centre from March 20-22, promises three days of presentations, discussions, and code sprints designed for Drupal developers and enthusiasts. The conference, bringing together the Australian and New Zealand Drupal communities, aims to cover more topics with additional rooms and tracks, fostering a collaborative environment through more spaces for informal gatherings and focused discussions.

On being crowned as the Media Sponsor for this esteemed event in Sydney, The DropTimes is determined to bring you comprehensive coverage. To top it up, we had a conversation with a few of the promising individuals involved with DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 to give you a preview of what can be expected.

Dries Buytaert

A highlight of DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 is the keynote sessions scheduled, including a significant update on the Drupal project by its founder, Dries Buytaert. This session, titled "The Drupal Project Update" on March 20, aims to provide attendees with the latest developments and future directions of the Drupal platform. 

Another anticipated keynote, "Beyond Buzzwords: Demystifying Diversity and Inclusion," will be presented by the Girls in Tech Australia team, focusing on implementing practical strategies for genuine inclusivity in the workplace. The session will be led by Renece Brewster, former CEO and co-founder of Australia's largest in-house video production company, Visual Domain, on 21 March 2024. The panel of the session features some incredible female leaders: Karen Katz, Board Member Girls in Tech Australia, Founder KK Consulting; Jess Ransley, Board Member Girls in Tech Australia, Enterprise Account Executive Salesforce; and Michelle Lie, Ambassador Girls in Tech Australia, Senior Manager PwC, who will share their firsthand experiences in the tech industry.

Girls In Tech Panel

"Instead of just talking theory, we'll draw from our real-life stories to show how diversity impacts careers, teams, and success. Expect candid discussions that shed light on the nuances of diversity and inclusion issues."

notes the team.

Girls in Tech Australia has been creating events for women in all stages of their tech careers since 2016, and the impact of diversity and inclusion in Australian workplaces has been a consistent theme since then. The session, Beyond Buzzwords, is more like a torch to light up the reality of the gender gap in the tech sector.

The Tech Council of Australia highlights a significant gender gap in the tech industry, with women constituting only 26% of the workforce and less representation in senior roles. This issue is compounded as many women leave tech careers, exacerbating the sector's skills shortage. Addressing this requires more than just diversity initiatives; it necessitates creating inclusive environments where everyone's contributions are valued and respected.

"The analogy that "diversity is being invited to the party, but inclusion is being asked to dance" truly captures the essence of our panel session. We're here to have open and genuine conversations, aiming to make the concepts of diversity and inclusion clearer and more accessible. We'll share practical strategies that attendees can put into action within their own workplaces to make a real difference,"

notes Girls in Tech.

The distinction between diversity and inclusion will be clarified in the session, underscoring that diversity involves acknowledging differences, whereas inclusion ensures everyone is valued and listened to.

"Our aim is simple: empower attendees to make positive changes and build truly inclusive tech workplaces,"

concludes Girls in Tech Australia Team.

Another factor that accentuates DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 is the Splash Awards, sponsored by Ironstar. These awards celebrate outstanding Drupal websites in Australia and New Zealand. They feature various categories and are judged by an independent panel. The shortlist for the Drupal Splash Awards Australia and New Zealand was released recently; check it out here.

Adding to the glimmer of the events, Salsa Digital, Platinum sponsor for DrupalSouth Sydney 2024, brings out their game show for Drupal Community in Sydney, "DrupalSouth's Got Talent." Participants in the talent show will have the opportunity to demonstrate their website-building skills using the Drupal CivicTheme. With no coding required, the competition encourages creativity and a positive approach.

Four contestants will have a 20-minute build sprint, and the winning designs will be awarded Visa gift cards. Judges will select winners based on adherence to the brief, creativity, and user focus. Additionally, representatives from Salsa Digital are presenting five sessions covering topics like Drupal security and testing.

Morpht plays a significant role at DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 as a Gold sponsor, presenting several sessions, including key contributions by Murray Woodman, Managing Director, and Amber Henry, Project Manager, Morpht.

Murray Woodman

"Drupal conferences are all about the people. We look forward to catching up with the Drupal Community each year to see what they have been up to. It is a healthy mix of friendship and business—information sharing, a bit of gossip, and a lot of laughs."

said Murray.

Morpht, a long-time supporter of DrupalSouth, aims to bolster the Australian Drupal community and foster engaging events. This year, they will highlight their advancements in personalization, particularly their Convivial CXP product, now part of the GovCMS DXP Panel, at their event booth, targeting government agencies and others interested in customized digital solutions.

"Drupal conferences are largely about the developers—DrupalSouth is no different. We are always up for a technical chat—pop by the booth and say "hello" if you are interested,"

adds Murray.

Murray's session at Morpht, "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Project Retrospectives," will share experiences from past projects, discussing both successes and challenges. He will examine project management insights, highlighting the importance of shared responsibility in ensuring project success. The session is designed for business owners and project managers seeking practical advice.

Amber Henry and Matt Commons will conduct the session "You Need This When?! Using Design Systems to Achieve Success" by Morpht. They will discuss how Morpht revamped NOCS's Child Safety website to focus more on campaigns and enhance visual design, user experience, and search functionality. 

Amber Henry

"Morpht is exceedingly proud of this project. Drupal has been used to deliver crucial content and assets on a matter that is important to the Australian community, culture and the future of our younger generations,"

says Amber.

Despite a tight deadline, they successfully launched the site, aligning with the "One Talk at a Time" campaign. The presentation will cover these challenges and solutions.

"We have also designed a series of Drupal character stickers to collect. There are Happy, Geeky, Punky, and Smirky, so we hope the attendees enjoy collecting them all!"

adds Amber.

The sessions mentioned above are only a drop in the sea. There are many more. Additionally, after two days of numerous sessions and discussions, the event's final day, March 22, 2024, will host a Code Contribution Sprint sponsored by PreviousNext.

Nicole Stirling

The DropTimes also extends our heartfelt gratitude to Nicole Stirling and all the organizers of DrupalSouth Sydney 2024, for all their support. DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 is a pivotal gathering for the Australian and New Zealand Drupal community, celebrating innovation, diversity, and collaboration. The event promises to advance the discourse on technology, inclusivity, and professional growth with keynotes, showcases, and discussions led by influential figures and organizations.

The DrupalSouth Sydney 2024 guide offers attendees a variety of local experiences in Sydney, including top coffee shops, restaurants, parks, and transportation tips. Additionally, it highlights cultural events, popular attractions, and vibrant bars or breweries to explore. This resource is designed to enhance the overall experience for those attending the conference. For more details and a complete list of recommendations, visit What to Do in Sydney

For a detailed review of the event and its schedule, visit the event website.

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