On 29 June 2015 in Brussels, DLI board members, Ms. Cheryl Miller and Ms. Janine de Keersmaeker, joined Ms. Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO and founder of LeanIn.org, and a small group of Brussels policy-makers to discuss increasing participation of girls and women in technological sectors. In her remarks, Ms. Sandberg underscored Facebook’s engagement in Europe where it employs 1500 people and provides a platform for businesses that creates another 140,000 jobs. “In Europe, less than 1 in 3 tech workers — and less than 1 in 5 tech graduates — are women,” said Sandberg. “This isn’t a European problem,” she said. “It’s an everywhere problem.”
Ms. Teresa Carlson is vice president of worldwide public sector at Amazon Web Services where she is responsible for operations, strategy, sales and business development. She was previously vice president of federal government business at Microsoft, among several other positions, and worldwide vice president of marketing and business development for Lexign Incorporated. Before moving into IT, Carlson spent nearly 15 years in healthcare. Among her many honors is the March of Dimes Heroines in Technology Lifetime Achievement Award. She is also one of the Washingtonian’s 100 Most Powerful Women.
1-3 May – Startup Weekend Leuven (Leuven, BE): On 3 May, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI founder, judged nine teams competing for final recognition at Startup Weekend Leuven. Prizes were rewarded to three projects: “FestivalRadar,” “Woodies,” and “ZenSay.” See more details and photos on the inQube Facebook page.
8-10 May – Startup Weekend Brussels – Maker Edition (Brussels): 8-10 May in Brussels, Ms. Selma Franssen, DLI Communication Director and inQube Community Manager, and Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Digital Literacy Lead and g-Hive Community Manager, provided startup and maker advice to the over eighty participants of Brussels’ first-ever Startup Weekend Maker Edition. On the final day of the event, DLI Founder, Ms. Cheryl Miller, participated in an all-star jury and awarded prizes to deserving winners in three categories: Internet of Things, Fab and Maker. All the women participants of Startup Weekend Brussels – Maker Edition also received free admission to two upcoming inQube workshops. See more details and photos on the inQube Facebook page.
19-21 May – Pink Wave / Nuvola Rosa Girls in ICT Event (Milan): On 19 May, DLI Founder, Ms. Cheryl Miller, traveled to Milan for the third edition of “Pink Cloud” (Nuvola Rosa) organized by Microsoft Italy, aiming to inspire 1500 girls to take up studies and careers in technology. Ms. Miller moderated a high-level panel on the topic of “Skilling up to be Digital Leaders of Tomorrow” with leading women from Microsoft, ASUS, Ernst & Young and Aviva. Ms. Miller and other event speakers also enjoyed a guided tour of the US and European pavilions at the World Expo 2015 and attended a VIP gala hosted by the Region of Lombardy. Photos on the DLI Facebook page.
11 April – TEDxVilnius (Vilnius): DLI Founder, Ms. Cheryl Miller, co-hosted the fifth annual TEDxVilnius event. This year’s theme was “Pale Blue Dot,” as immortalized by the Voyager 1 photo of the Earth in 1990 and in the words of the great Carl Sagan. The 2015 edition of TEDxVilnius featured inspiring speakers from around the world. Cheryl herself gave a talk at the 2012 edition of TEDxVlinius on the subject “girls are going to save the world,” of course. Photos here.
The opening ceremony for the 2015 European Ada Awards featured lightening talks by inspiring Digital Leaders including girls and women in tech from across Europe, past & current Ada Award-winners, and supporters of the Awards, including:
20:00-22:00 – inQube workshop “Quantify Everything”: Third workshop in the Spring 2015 “Build A Kick&ss Online Presence” series for women* by Ms. Selma Franssen, DLI Communications Director & inQube Community Manager.
If you or your organisation is interested in partnering, volunteering, sponsoring girls & women to participate in DLI activities, or would like to support DLI and its mission in other ways, please contact us. Donations to DLI are gratefully accepted and go toward furthering its mission of bridging the gender gap and the digital divide worldwide.
Thank you to our 2014-2015 Ada Award Partners & Sponsors!
On the heels of an exciting DLI opening event on 9 March 2015, we are now thrilled to introduce the new members of the DLI Board of Directors. Learn more about each board member below, and stay tuned here for further news about their activities with the Institute.
Spring has sprung at the Digital Leadership Institute and we have welcomed it with open arms–and the Brussels launch of Europe’s first-ever digital innovation centre for girls and women!
In addition to celebrating this great milestone, Ms. Rosanna Kurrer and Ms. Selma Franssen, the DLI g-Hive and inQube Community Managers, kicked off our first digital and entrepreneurship events for girls and women in the brand new DLI space. The DLI team were also in Belgium, Germany and the US this month promoting girls and women in what we call “ESTEAM”: entrepreneuership, science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. Please read about our activities below and check out our calendar for more upcoming events and activities.
17 March – GSMA Europe – Connected Women (Brussels): Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Executive Director, participated in a high-level roundtable on “accelerating the role of women in the digital economy” hosted by GSMA Europe, the regional organisation of the global association for GSM stakeholders.
Thank you to all our supporters and friends for welcoming Spring 2015 and this exciting new stage of DLI activity with us! We are looking forward to enjoying the coming months and to welcoming many more Springs with you in the years to come!
Be sure to visit our calendar and sign up the DLI Newsletter in order to keep up DLI events and activities!
On 9 March in Brussels, the Digital Leadership Institute and 150 of its closest friends and supporters celebrated International Women’s Day with the grand opening of DLI‘s Digital Innovation Centre for Girls & Women, a first of its kind in Europe! This very special occasion was marked with fun, hands-on digital activities for all ages, a high-level roundtable with Brussels, Belgian and European stakeholders, and a reception for all in attendance.
To kick off the evening, DLI volunteers and partners took over the entire, new 100m2 space to give young and young-at-heart members of the DLI family a try at hands-on digital activities with the following themes:
3D Design & Printing
Digital Music & DJing
Bits, Bytes & Machine Code
Silly Robot Missions
Play Your Musical Fruit
In particular, the Bits, Bytes & Machine Code activity – a card game for all ages designed by Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Digital Literacy Lead and g-Hive Community Manager – was a popular (and loud) crowd favorite. It required players to calculate in bits and bytes, and showcased the digital natives in the group, who nimbly trounced their analog ancestors to much vocal lamenting.
The evening’s activities were rounded out with a high-level discussion on the topic of “Women Driving Digital Innovation,” with unique and insightful interventions by the VIPs in attendance, all amazing role models for girls and women in technology:
As a magical closing to an exciting evening, Ms. Pascale Van Damme, Managing Director of Dell Belgium & Luxembourg and 2014 “ICT Woman of the Year”, surprised the convened guests with dedication of forty Dell laptops to DLI saying “this is a contribution to help ensure the DLI Centre gets off on the right foot and is able to achieve its mission which we support very much.”
Thank you, Dell! And thank you to all of our DLI community and supporters for such a wonderful and memorable DLI opening event!
On 10 December 2014 in Brussels, in honor of the 199th anniversary of the birth of Lady Ada Lovelace – world’s first-ever computer programmer, woman and European – the Digital Leadership Institute held the inaugural Ada Lovelace Conference celebrating outstanding girls and women in technology in Europe and beyond. The event, blogged by new European Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip responsible for the Digital Single Market, was generously hosted by General Electric as part of the GE Garages initiative. It included a high-level best practices round-table on “getting more girls and women into digital studies and careers,” and three hands-on digital workshops – on 3D design & printing, creative coding & “beautiful/electric Arduinos” – for girls ages six to sixteen. The event enjoyed participation by over one hundred people, and was part of the 2014 European Hour of Code.
Looking for a way to celebrate Girls in ICT Day 2014? Please consult the ITU’s Girls in ICT Day portal to find resources for organising your own event and to learn about activities being organised in your area. UN Women is also promoting Girls in ICT Day around the world. And if you would like to do something simple and effective to get more girls into tech, please consider contributing your own 1-minute video to the European Commission’s #Passion4Tech campaign via their “Every Girl Digital” Facebook page.
As always, if you are an girl or woman working and studying in digital sectors, or part of an organisation promoting more girls and women in tech, please consider nominating yourself or your organisation/project for a 2014 European Ada Award, deadline 16 September 2014!