Monday, October 30, 2023

Update from Unicode’s Community Engagement Team

By Elango Cheran, Vice Chair of the Community Engagement Team

If you have been receiving the Unicode Newsletter or following us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and the Friends of Unicode on Facebook, you have likely seen information about new Unicode events and resources.

These events and tools are the result of the coordinated efforts of Unicode’s Community Engagement (CE) Team. This team was formed in March of 2022 after our logistics partner for the Internationalization and Unicode Conference and Unicode decided to go in different directions.  

A small group of volunteers and Unicode staff saw this as an opportunity to explore different types of events and see how we could reach a more global audience. Since July of last year, we have held seven online events. We conscientiously maintained a focus on the online medium for these initial events to ensure broader reach and access to knowledge, which is different from how Unicode has approached events in the past. From the recent online events, we have drawn in hundreds of new people from 65+ countries. And for each of those, we have made available and promoted the recordings on the Unicode YouTube channel.

And all that is to say, there is more to do!

As a small non-profit that depends on volunteers, we started modestly and have been pushing our boundaries, experimenting with our tools, and expanding our capabilities with each event.

The upcoming Unicode Technology Workshop is a natural extension of that experimentation. While this is in California as an in-person event, we hope that we can take lessons learned and apply this model to additional in-person events in other parts of the globe.

I am personally thankful for the opportunity to help Unicode connect with a more global audience, given how foundational and impactful Unicode’s work is on people, languages, and communities around the world. The work of our team is made possible by my committed colleagues, some of whom are from organizations such as Google, UC Berkeley, and Spotify.

It is encouraging to see the growing interest in events, as well as interest in people partnering with Unicode to launch such efforts. If you have ideas on types of outreach programming or educational tools that would help you or others on your internationalization journey, please reach out to us via

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