Photo: UNICC

Girls and Women Talking Tech – 100 Interviews – Over 20 from UNICC

As we move further into the information age, women and men need to be equally represented as shapers of our increasingly digital world. One way to inspire and empower girls and young women is to showcase success stories.

UNICC is proud to be working with ITU, the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth and EQUALS to present the Girls and Women Talking Tech series, which grew out of ITU’s Girls in ICT Day in 2018-2019 with conferences at Microsoft and Cornell Tech in New York and at UNOG in Geneva. UNICC is supporting with this effort SDG 5: Gender equality and women’s empowermentSDG 4: Quality Education as well as UNICC’s own gender parity initiatives.

For 2020, it wasn’t possible to have physical meetings anymore, so the group started to host dialogues online – and by now this has been a big success and radically transformed the scope of the initial project. UNICC continues to include more and more UNICC women in interviews, often with the assistance of Break Through Tech Winterns and Communications team interns. Across the inter-Agency team, the goal is to engage women in 196 countries!

Also a blog post marking the 100th interview milestone has been published at ITU News, where 200 girls and women in ICT share their stories on digital transformation, diversity and inclusion.

We could not be prouder of this community of over 200 women committed to supporting one another. Envisioning how many more minds have been inspired and growth opportunities have been triggered by the project is deeply gratifying and shows how digital initiatives and partnerships can make a tangible, positive difference in people’s lives.

Anastasia Bektimirova, Talking Tech team at ITU

UNICC women were able to share lessons they learned along the way, advice about careers in technology and stories that inspired and help many young girls. Check out our playlist that includes all the interviews UNICC women have participated in.

Despite the growing demand for information and communication technology (ICT) professionals, women still trail male counterparts in terms of pay, leadership roles, and representation in the digital sector. The World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report 2021 suggests that only 14 per cent of those working in cloud computing, 20 per cent of engineers, and 32 per cent of data and artificial intelligence professionals are women.

These disparities are concerning, not least because technology-related careers arguably dominate today’s job market. Moreover, the underrepresentation of women means their voices are absent from decision-making when it comes to designing our digital society.

As we move further into the information age, women and men need to be equally represented as shapers of our increasingly digital world. One way to inspire and empower girls and young women is to showcase success stories. Of course we need men to be active supporters and collaborators of this direction and perspective.

The Talking Tech: Girls and Women in ICT interview series promotes girls and women in the sector. Today, there is nothing they cannot achieve in this fast-evolving field.

Participants range from experts in artificial Intelligence (AI) to electronic sports (esports), astronauts to leaders of UN Agencies, and ambassadors to corporate executives. In the interviews, women and girls from around the world share achievements and challenges, exchange advice and network with one another – all to inspire others with evidence that every girl can fulfil great potential in the ICT sector.