Representatives from toy, media, retail companies, and more, came together yesterday for a day-long conference sponsored by the White House Council on Women and Girls, The Department of Education, and the Media, Diversity, & Social Change Initiative at the University of Southern California. As part of the conference, companies and organizations committed to taking new action to break down gender stereotypes in toys and media to help children explore, learn, and dream without limits. Companies invited to participate included littleBits, Dream Big Toy Co., Disney, Mattel, and DC Comics.

According to the White House, research shows that children’s interests, ambitions, and skills can be shaped early on by the media they consume and the toys with which they play, potentially influencing everything from the subjects they choose to study to the careers they ultimately pursue. Consequently, those early experiences can affect not just their development and life choices, but the composition of the country’s workforce and the strength of the economy for decades to come.