Towards Inclusive Digital Transformation in Europe

The future is already here — it’s just not evenly distributed. – William Gibson

The world is becoming digitised at an unprecedented rate. The advent of the internet, mobile devices and cloud-working has put vast connectivity and computing power in the hands of individuals at the most personal level, the world over. Since 2000, subscriptions for mobile services in the world have grown ten-fold to seven billion, and today, 3.5 billion people are online, most of whom are located in developed countries (ITU). By 2020, it it is estimated that people will be joined on the Internet by more than 50 billion objects, only one percent of which are connected today (Cisco). The future scope of digitisation is staggering, and the speed of its onset, and apparent inevitability, has given rise to what is called “digital disruption.” The consequences of this digital disruption—for our lives, the planet and our fellow creatures—are still largely unknown.

Digital disruption is impacting the technology sector itself, where demand for skills and the computing power to fuel the transformation is far outstripping our collective ability to keep up. Digitisation is affecting non-tech industries too, where market leaders in sectors like financial services, energy and even government are reinventing themselves as “digital” organisations. The rate of digital transformation represented by consumer-focused cloud computing, whose generated revenue is predicted to quadruple over the next ten years to $173B, will be further dwarfed by the coming of age of the “Industrial Internet.” Digital transformation of the world’s power and production facilities, connected across a digital landscape populated by massive amounts of data, is heralding the fourth Industrial Revolution, and is predicted to add €422B in value to German industry alone by 2025 (BITKOM, Fraunhofer).

While we are starting to get our heads around what digital disruption is and what it means, it is also important to understand what it is not. Not all continents—let alone countries—enjoy large bandwidth and high availability online access today, and fifty-three percent of people in the world are not online. This situation belies a harsh reality underpinning the digital disruption: Not everyone is on board.

The Digital Divide

As digital transformation goes, Europe enjoys an unrivalled position in the world. Twenty-five EU countries score higher than the OECD average for ICT indicators, and nine out of the ten nations with the fastest broadband in the world are located in Europe. As ITU figures suggest, however, differences in broadband speed persist, and a “digital divide” among regions of the world which parallels socio-economic realities, is clearly observable. In 2016, more than half of the world’s population — 3.9 billion people — remain offline, and of the nearly one billion people living in the Least Developing Countries (LDCs), 851 million do not use the Internet.

Among regions of the world, a second, persistent phenomenon may also be observed that cuts across geographic locations and even socio-economic conditions. Around the globe, no matter where they are, women as a demographic are less likely to be online than men, and despite its apparent leadership, Europe’s women are also getting left behind. Of the three and a half billion people online in the world, eighteen percent are men and sixteen percent are women, reflecting 200 million fewer women online overall. In Europe, of the twenty-one countries for which the ITU collected sex-disaggregated data in 2015, men enjoy greater online access than women in eighteen countries. In addition, the rate that women come online is slower than men, which means that the digital divide thus compounded by the gender gap risks deepening.

Towards Inclusive Digital Leadership

In addition to generally enjoying less online access, European women have fewer digital skills than men, they are less likely to engage in formal Computer Science studies, and they hold twenty percent or less of technical and leadership roles in ICT organisations. Tech entrepreneurs are five times more likely to be men than women, and in some places this ratio closer to 100:1. In leadership across the board, including in the technology sector, women make up only four percent of corporate CEOs and they hold less than fifteen percent of board roles in the private sector. Since the tech sector is both a key driver of digitisation as well as a reflection of the general digitisation of a society, diversity in this sector is particularly indicative of digital inclusiveness.

Where digital skills are concerned, for the seven-year period from 2005 to 2012 during which sex-disaggregated Digital Scorecard data was collected by the European Commission, research showed a consistent and persistent lag in the digital skill-levels of European women. When overall skill-levels increased or decreased across EU member states, a corresponding shift in women’s skill sets was also reported. In every case a lag remained, roughly representing a ten percent difference between the genders. These percentages represent the following absolute numbers:

2012 – EU Population: 502M people

  • Men: 49% or 246M people in Europe
  • Men with medium-high computer skills: 57% or 140M people
  • Men with low or no computer skills: 43% or 106M people
  • Women: 51% or 256M people in Europe
  • Women with medium-high computer skills: 46% or 118M people
  • Women with low or no computer skills: 54% or 138M people

For a European population of 560 million people in 2015, Eurostat data for individuals with basic, no or low digital skills, shows the following evolution:

2015 – EU Population: 560M people

  • Men: 49% or 274M people
  • Men with basic, low or no digital skills: 50% or 137M people
  • Women: 51% or 286M people
  • Women with basic, low or no digital skills: 52% or 149M people

From this data, the following may be concluded:

  • 286 million people, or over half of Europe’s population, have basic, low or no digital skills;
  • 149 million people of Europe’s digitally under-skilled, or 27% of the total EU population, are women;
  • 12 million more women than men in Europe, or 2% of the total EU population, are digitally under-skilled; and
  • These numbers reflect a significant and persistent trend.

Although devolution in European digital skills over the 2005-2015 period may be explained by expansion of the European Union and changes to data collection approaches, the following facts are clear:

A woman in Europe is:

  • Less likely to be online;
  • More likely to be digitally under-skilled; and
  • At greater risk of being excluded from the digital disruption underway.

Towards Inclusive Digital Transformation

Like online access, digital skill levels are an excellent indicator of the general education and economic integration of a given demographic, and they are an even stronger litmus test of how well that demographic is engaged in the digital transformation afoot. As such, the situation described above represents vast lost potential to Europe and to the young and adult women of Europe who are unable to fully realise their place as productive members of our increasingly digital society. A risk exists that the needs of these women go unheeded and the benefits of engaging them in the further digitisation of European society go unrealised.

A 2013 European Commission report demonstrated that equal participation of women in the ICT sector — as a quick-win to address the growing skills and job gap in Europe — would contribute as much as €9B to the European economy every year. A UN study in the same period linked every ten percent increase in access to broadband with a 1.38% growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for developing countries, and noted that bringing 600 million additional women and girls online specifically could boost global GDP by up to $18B. The increasing rate of digital disruption could certainly serve to further compound the upside potential shown here as much as it could multiply the downside risk from exclusion that is already happening.

For this reason, the present Manifesto explicitly supports priority-setting, resources and action at the EU level that accomplishes the following:

  • Curtail the risk of further digital exclusion of Europe’s 286 million women;
  • Close the digital skills gap impacting women in Europe; and
  • Maximise the opportunities presented by engaging Europe’s women to actively design, build and lead Europe’s digital transformation.

To this end, the Manifesto seeks to promote, scale and replicate initiatives that increase ESTEAM—including digital—skills for girls and women and prepare them to lead Europe’s digital transformation. Such initiatives embody best practices of the following kind:

  • Focus on girls and women specifically;
  • Promote female role models in tech, and more generally;
  • Stimulate learning through hands-on, result-driven and values-oriented activities;
  • Develop a rich, diverse and widespread community of European female digital leaders in the public and private sector, including entrepreneurship.

Many world-class initiatives of the foregoing kind have been developed and carried out in Europe by the Digital Leadership Institute and its partners.

*Reprinted from The e-Skills Manifesto, Chapter 10: Towards Inclusive Digital Transformation, written by Cheryl Miller, Cofounder, Digital Leadership InstituteCheck against printed copy.

DLI Wrap-up 2016

Banner Year for DLI: In 2016, the Digital Leadership Institute directly reached over seven hundred girls and women with hands-on workshops and role model activities aiming to improve their ESTEAM* skills and promote their participation in strategic, innovative sectors of the economy — as creators, entrepreneurs and leaders.  We thank you for your support of DLI in 2016 and, with your help, we look forward to positively impacting the lives of more girls and women in 2017!

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Support DLI in 2017:  If you would like to support the ongoing work of DLI to promote inclusive digital transformation, which is reaching some of the most under-served communities in Europe, please consider donating to our institute or supporting us in other ways in the coming year.  US-based organisations can make a tax-deductible donation to DLI here.  Do not hesitate to contact us for more information on how to get involved.

Upcoming Events in 2017:  The following DLI events are coming up in 2017.  To keep up with the rest of our events, please visit our calendar or sign up for the DLI Newsletter.

2016 European Ada Awards smallUpdate November-December 2016:  On 8 December 2016 in Brussels, the Digital Leadership Institute celebrated the 2016 European Ada Awards recognising top girls and women in digital fields in Europe, and the organisations that support them.  The event was hosted by GE Garages in the context of European Vocational Skills Week 2016, and supported by top decision-makers from public and private sectors across Europe, including Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, Ms. Eva Paunova, Member of European Parliament, and Ms. Beata Stelmach, CEO of GE Poland.  DLI and its partners awarded the 2016 European Digital Girls of the Year, Digital Woman of the Year, and Digital Impact Organisation of the Year.

The DLI Board and Executive Team are actively involved in initiatives with partners and stakeholders around the world that promote ESTEAM* leadership by girls and women. Find out below about our work in November and December 2016, learn here about future activities in which we are involved, and visit our calendar for upcoming events organised by DLI.

*entrepreneurship, science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics


8 November – “Promoting Digital Skills for Girls” Webinar: Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder, was a special guest for an 8 November webinar on “promoting digital skills for girls,” hosted by the Innovation in Education Unit of the European Commission’s Directorate General for Education, Art and Culture.


wehubs17 November – “Enterprising Women in TechWeHubs Closing Event (Brussels): On 17 November in Brussels, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder, judged the final pitch competition and contributed to an expert panel on “best practices in promoting female entrepreneurship,” in the context of the closing event of the WeHubs project for women web entrepreneurs in Europe.


debaets debates21 November – “Make America Great Again” – Debaets Debates (Brussels): On 21 November in Brussels, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder,  joined a high profile public debate on the topic of “Make America Great Again” hosted by Ms. Bianca Debaets, State Secretary for the Brussels Capital Region, and moderated by Mr. Rik Van Cauwelaert, journalist for De Tijd.


sme-assembly-201623-24 November – “Helping Europe’s Entrepreneurs Reach New Heights” 2016 SME Assembly Slovakia (Bratislava): On 23-24 November in Bratislava, Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Cofounder, contributed to a high-level roundtable on “Entrepreneurship Education” at the European Commission’s annual SME Assembly, taking place as part of the Slovak Presidency of the EU Council.


thinkdigital29 November – Think Digital “Shaping the Digital Future of Europe” (Brussels): On 29 November, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder, moderated an expert panel on “Shaping the Digital Future of Europe,” including Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and Ms. Kaja Kallas, Member of European Parliament, which took place at Egmont Palace in Brussels as part of the first Think Digital summit.


logo_sfg1 December – A Journey into European Factories of the Future (Graz, Austria): On 1 December in Graz, Austria, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder, delivered a closing keynote on the topic of “Industry 4.0” for the event “A journey into European Factories of the Future,” organised by SFG.


Be sure to visit our Calendar, Upcoming Activities page, and sign up for the DLI Newsletter in order to keep up with DLI events and activities!

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Belgian Minister De Croo Recognises Top Girls and Women in Tech

On 8 December in Brussels, Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander De Croo recognised top girls and women in digital fields in Europe and underscored the need for positive role models, coding curriculum and communities of excellence to encourage youth toward digital careers. “Young people need inspiration,” De Croo said in remarks at a ceremony for the 2016 Ada Awards, named for Lady Ada Lovelace the world’s first computer programmer. “That inspiration comes from seeing excellent people at work, like the girls and women recognised by these awards.”

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Alexander De Croo, Belgian Deputy Prime Minister & Minister for the Digital Agenda

De Croo’s comments came on the heels of news that women make up fewer IT professionals than ever in Europe despite skyrocketing demand for digital expertise. “Over the last ten years, demand for tech specialists in Europe has grown eight times faster than other fields, but women hold just sixteen percent of these jobs,” explained Cheryl Miller, cofounder of Brussels-based Digital Leadership Institute and organisers of the Ada Awards. “By 2020, one million IT jobs will go unfilled because the skills are not available in the marketplace,” Miller continued. “So by engaging women, we can potentially double the number of tech experts in Europe, increasing European competitiveness and making sure girls and women do not get left behind in the digital disruption.”

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Fireside Chat: Niamh Scanlon (14yo Ireland) – 2015 Digital Girl of the Year, and Rosanna Kurrer/DLI

Nuria Oliver, winner of the 2016 European Digital Woman of the Year Award, noted that digital disruption risks exacerbating the lack of diversity in tech, but also holds promise for positive change. “The percentage of girls and women in technology in most Western countries is simply not acceptable,” Oliver observed. “But in the future, we will only be able to address problems like global warming and the ageing population with the help of technology. So we need all our diverse human capital on board: to optimise innovation potential and to increase our chances of success in these important fields.”

According to Beata Stelmach, CEO for GE Poland, workforce diversity and digital transformation are two opportunities that GE, hosts of the 2016 Ada Awards ceremony, is explicitly leveraging for success. “We see GE as a 124-year-old software startup,” said Stelmach. “And with this thinking, we seek to pioneer a digital industrial sector that could contribute as much as $1.7 Trillion to European GDP annually by 2025.”  In order to fully exploit the opportunities that digitisation brings,”it will be key to engage the entire European workforce,” she added. “And women in particular.”

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Disrupted Workforce Panel: Cheryl Miller/DLI, Beata Stelmach/GE, Andrea Parola/eSkills Association, Esther Roure/CISCO, Eva Paunova/MEP

Cerys Lock and Gabrijela Juriç, winners of the 2016 European Digital Girl of the Year Award, echoed the message of Deputy Prime Minister De Croo.  Fourteen-year-old Cerys, feels that more computer science curriculum in school would be critical to get young people, girls included, engaged in the digital transformation. She reflected on the era of the Commodore 64 and said “forty years ago that computer was popular and got people into coding.  We need something similar today, like the Raspberry Pi, that I personally am a huge fan of.”   Gabrijela, also 14, added:  “I am just proud that what I am doing actually matters to people in the sector. That really inspires me to keep going.”

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Digital Girls of the Year 2016: Gabrijela Juriç (14yo – Croatia) and Cerys Lock (14yo England)

Deputy Prime Minister De Croo summed up the awards event:  “When someone is good at something you need to show it and congratulate her for what she is doing,” he said.  “That is why the Ada Awards and the work of DLI is important:  You need to show examples, and these young ladies are just the kind of examples we all need to see.”

The 2016 European Ada Awards were presented in the following categories to the noted recipients:

2016 European Digital Woman of the Year:  Ms. Nuria Oliver, Spain
2016 European Digital Girl of the Year:  Miss Gabrijela Juriç, Croatia (14 years old)
2016 European Digital Girl of the Year:  Miss Cerys Lock, England (14 years old)
2016 European Digital Impact Organisation of the YearCyberMentor, Germany

The Ada Awards are an initiative of Brussels-based Digital Leadership Institute in partnership with the Council of European Professional Informatics Societies (CEPIS), DIGITALEUROPE and European SchoolNet. The awards are named for Lady Ada Byron of Lovelace, the world’s first computer programmer.  They are an official pledge to the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition in Europe.

The Digital Leadership Institute is a Brussels-based think tank whose mission is to promote inclusive digital transformation.

ada16 program2

DLI to Name Top Women in Tech at GE Garages

On 8 December in Brussels, in the context of GE Garages 2016 and the European Commission’s Vocational Skills Week 2016, the Digital Leadership Institute is proud to host a high-level panel on the topic of Disrupted Workforce: Leveraging Talent and Tech for Europe’s Future,” and the 2016 European Ada Awards Ceremony recognising top European girls and women in tech and the organisations that support them.  The event is free and open to the public, but registration at the following link is required: http://bit.ly/Ada16

Agenda:

15.30–16.00: Registration and Access to GE Garages
16.00-16.45:  Panel on Disrupted Workforce:  Leveraging Talent & Tech for Europe’s Future

16.45-17.00: Fireside Chat with Miss Niamh Scanlon, 2015-16 European Digital Girl of the Year and Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, Cofounder and Digital Literacy Lead, Digital Leadership Institute

17.15-18.00: 2016 European Ada Awards Presentation by Ada Awards Partners

18.00-19.00: 2016 European Ada Awards Reception
19.00-21:00: Pecha Kucha Night featuring Miss Manon Van Hoorebeke, 2014-15 European Digital Girl of the Year – separate registration required herehttp://bit.ly/pechakucha16


High-level Panel

16:00-16:45 – High-level panel on the topic of Disrupted Workforce: Leveraging Talent and Tech for Europe’s Future,” with top decision-makers from the European public and private sector.

2016 European Ada Awards Ceremony 

16:45-19:00 – Fireside chat with Miss Niamh Scanlon, 2015 European Digital Girl of the Year from Ireland, 2016 European Ada Awards Ceremony and Reception generously hosted by GE.  European awards for Digital Woman of the Year, Digital Girl of the Year and Digital Impact Organization of the Year will be presented by a high-level representative of the European Commission and members of the European Ada Awards partnership.

Pecha Kucha Night

19:00 onwards – Following the 2016 Ada Awards reception, participants will enjoy a Pecha Kucha night with inspiring talks from European thought-leaders, including Miss Manon Van Hoorebeke, 2014 European Digital Girl of the Year from Belgium.

Venue

All of the evening’s events will take place in the Panoramic Hall at The Square Brussels, Coudenberg Entrance, as part of Garages 2016 and in celebration of the 201st anniversary of the birth of Ada Lovelace.

 

Women Refugees Move It Forward

mif eAs part of Code Week Europe 2016, on 15-16 October in Brussels, sixty young and adult women gathered at the Digital Leadership Institute’s inQube space for a Move It Forward “female digital starters” weekend in support of women refugees and asylum-seekers in Europe.  One quarter of event participants, ranging in age from 14 to 62 years old, were recent refugees to Europe, and the entire group shared over 25 different nationalities.

Through expert support and hands-on digital skills workshops over the course of a weekend, Move It Forward event participants built and launched their own technology-enabled initiatives to address the unique safety, health, education and economic challenges faced by displaced women across Europe and the MENA region.

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On the final day of the event, the most innovative projects with and for women refugees were selected for further incubation at inQube, and were recognized again later in the week at a European Parliament event hosted by KAGIDER, the Turkish women’s entrepreneurship association.  Projects included:

World-class technology partners who support DLI and inQube to deliver the Move It Forward startup weekends for women include Amazon Web Services, Onboard CRM and MIT AppInventor for Android. With continued support from these and other partners, DLI plans to organise MIF weekends in Istanbul, Athens, Sofia and other cities in 2017 in order to continue addressing global challenges that disproportionately impact girls and women, including women seeking asylum, women in media, cyberviolence against girls and women, etc.

Ms. Anna Zobnina, Chair of the European Network of Migrant Women, who gave a keynote and took part in the event, shared the following: “When extremism and poverty attack women, forcing them to flee their home, we should attack extremism and poverty by empowering refugee women to rebuild their dignified lives. And if we want to win, we have to be strategic and use the digital technology to fight violence and discrimination that women on the move face at every step of their journeys.”

Ms. Sanem Oktar, KAGIDER President said: “As the largest women’s entrepreneurship network in Turkey, KAGIDER is thrilled to ‘Move It Forward’ for female digital starters. We share the vision of economically empowering women to drive positive change in the world, and of enabling them to use technology to do that. We are therefore excited to showcase the successes of Move It Forward Brussels 2016 and to build on this with Move It Forward Istanbul in 2017.

The first Move It Forward weekend took place in January 2016 with support of the Brussels Capital Region. Four of the final projects received expert support from DLI for a period of five months, and several projects are continuing today. To build on its success in Brussels, DLI and its partners are now launching Move It Forward in other cities around the globe.

The two-day Move It Forward event is a flagship of the inQube female digital accelerator, a DLI initiative whose mission is to redress under-representation of women in tech startup.

Event Sponsors and Partners

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DLI Update – September 2016

The DLI Board and Executive Team are actively involved in initiatives with partners and stakeholders around the world that promote ESTEAM* leadership by girls and women. Find out below about our work in September 2016, learn here about future activities in which we are involved, and visit our calendar for upcoming events organised by DLI.

*entrepreneurship, science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics


caliclinic6, 8, 13 & 15 September – The Women’s California Style Career Clinic (Brussels): In collaboration with the DLI inQube community, four free workshops with the Women’s California Style Career Clinic were carried out at DLI in September for women looking to discover their dream career.


womeninbusiness15 September – Women in Business Social Event (Brussels): On 15 September in Brussels, DLI team members were on board for the autumn networking event of the Women in Business platform at Impulse.Brussels.


mizbiz15 September- MizBiz Mentorship Event (Brussels):  Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Cofounder, joined a 15 September MIZBIZ speed dating event that connected MIZBIZ members with mentors in the Brussels business community.


DAW Flower21-22 September – Digital African Woman Annual Event (Brussels): In the context of the inaugural Digital African Women event on 21-22 September, Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Cofounder, carried out a series of Design Thinking and Android app development workshops to support entrepreneurship by women in the African diaspora.


codeweek-badge27 September – “How do we make every week Code Week?” Debate at the European Commission (Brussels): On 27 September in Brussels, the European Code Week Ambassadors, including Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Cofounder, and wider community engaged in a debate on the merits of learning to code.


ec28-29 September – ET2020 Working Group on Digital Skills and Competences (Helsinki): On 28-29 September, Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, DLI Cofounder, joined representatives of Ministries of Education from across Europe to promote Digital Skills and Competences especially for Europe’s young women.


wegate30 September – European Commission WEgate Launch Event (Brussels): On 30 September in Brussels, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder,  joined an expert panel at the launch of WEgate, the European Commission platform promoting women in entrepreneurship.


Be sure to visit our Calendar, Upcoming Activities page, and sign up for the DLI Newsletter in order to keep up with DLI events and activities!

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Move It Forward for Women Refugees

On 15-16 October, in celebration of Code Week Europe 2016, the Digital Leadership Institute and its partners will organise the second FREE Move It Forward – female digital starters weekend bringing 100 teen and adult women* together from greater Brussels to develop digital projects that support women refugees and asylum-seekers in Europe. This initiative, part of the DLI inQube female digital accelerator, is supported by top technology companies, and youth and women’s networks and communities. Its objective is to give beginner girls and women the skills to drive positive change and enable them to become digital entrepreneurs and leaders.
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Participants:  If you are a teen or adult woman* interested in building your tech and startup skills for the benefit of women asylum-seekers and refugees in Europe, please apply to attend this FREE event at the following link:  http://bit.ly/mifbru16oct  Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis and effort will be made to accommodate everyone who applies.
Supporters:  Please see a list of our Move It Forward partners and sponsors below, and kindly contact us if you would like more information on how to support this event. Opportunities exist for Move It Forward volunteers, interpreters, coaches, jury members, content and media partners, prize contributors and sponsors.
*anyone who identifies as a woman

Draft Programme:

Day One – 15 October (Saturday):
  • 8:00-8:30 – Registration & Coffee
  • 8:30-9:30 – Opening Plenary: Inspiring talks by Move It Forward Partners
  • Welcome & Keynote Presentations:

Day Two – 16 October (Sunday):

  • 8:00-8:30 – Coffee & Danishes
  • 8:30-10:30 – Workshop 3: Smartphone App Development with MIT App Inventor for Android with Ms. Rosanna Kurrer / DLI
  • 10:30-12:30 – Workshop 4: Launch Your Project in the Cloud with Ms. Nicola Walsh & Ms. Madalina Lazar / Amazon Web Services
  • 12:30-13:30 – Lunch Break
  • 13:30-16:00 – Project Work with Coaches
  • 16:00-17:00 – Presentation Preparation
  • 17:00-19:00 – Closing Plenary: Project Presentations & Judging
  • 18:30 – Keynote Presentations:
    • Ms. Sanem Oktar, President, KAGIDER
    • Ms. Helena Pofliet – Counselor on Equal Opportunity, Cabinet of Ms. Bianca Debaets, State Secretary of the Brussel Capital Region
  • 19:00-21:00 – Awards Dinner & Networking
Awards:
Prizes will be handed out for the top three projects presented on Sunday afternoon, and top projects will have the opportunity to be showcased at the European Parliament on 18 October as part of the KAGIDER event on “Digitalisation of women’s entrepreneurship and growing opportunities for all – Registration here!
  • Overall Best: 6-month inQubation at DLI; 10 Hours one-to-one inQube Startup Coaching; Other TBC
  • Most Impact: 4-month inQubation at DLI; 8 Hours one-to-one inQube Startup Coaching; Other TBC
  • Best Technical Solution: 4-month inQubation at DLI; 8 Hours one-to-one inQube Startup Coaching; Other TBC
Keynote Speakers:
Anna Zobnina: Born in St.Petersburg, Russia, Anna is a feminist researcher, activist and policy advocate. She is a selected expert with the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) and is serving the second term as chair of European Network of Migrant Women (ENoMW), focusing on capacity-building of migrant & refugee women NGOs in Europe and strengthening their inclusion in the EU decision-making,  across such diverse areas as access to economic empowerment, justice, citizenship, labour participation, sexual & reproductive rights and non-discrimination.
 
 

Ms. Mina Jaf Mina Jaf was born in Kurdistan but was forced to flee the country at a young age. Mina became a refugee in Denmark and used her experience and motivation, to help other refugees. Mina is today the founder of Women Refugee Route and she works tirelessly on refugee issues and on women’s rights issues. Watch her speech from WRC Voice of Courage Award here!
 
Ms. Yara Al-AdibYara is Syrian-born and Western educated, now working in UX design at Deloitte Digital in Belgium. Besides having an eclectic cultural background (Arab raised and Western educated), she has acquired a mix of disciplines: Communication Design with Service and Social Design. These disciplines allow Yara to design with empathy, while keeping in mind both form and function. She considers herself a mediator between the East and West–both in terms of traditions and in design perspective.  Check out Yara’s TEDx talk here!

 
 
 
 
Jury Members:
+Others TBA
 
Coaches:
The Move It Forward female digital starter weekend is supported by a worldclass team of coaches and trainers who are generously giving their time to help participants deliver awesome projects and enterprises.  Meet our terrific coaches here!
 
Ms. Emmanuelle Verhaegen, COO, CT Paramedics
 
 
 
 
Ms. Pavlina Canova, Director of Communications, Cosmopolitalians.eu
 
+Others TBA
Sponsors & Partners:
Thank you to the individuals and organisations who are making this event possible!

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Join Europe's Largest Women in Tech Event Ever

On 25-26 April in Brussels, in honour of 2016 International Girls in ICT Day, the Digital Leadership Institute is proud to partner with the European Centre for Women and Technology and others to organise the very first European Celebration of Women in Computing, Europe’s largest #WomenInTech event ever!  ECWC16 will take place at the Proximus Lounge in Brussels, and aims to bring together industry practitioners, policy-makers, digital society decision-makers and young and experienced women pursuing studies and careers in digital fields.

Digital Leadership:  As official partner to ECWC16, DLI will deliver several elements of the event, including:

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Digital Luminaries: With keynote presentations by global luminaries of digital transformation — including Ms. Irina Bokova, UNESCO Director General, Mr. Andrus Ansip, European Commission Vice President responsible for the Digital Single Market, and Ms. Terry Reintke, MEP and Rapporteur of the European Parliament Report on gender equality and empowering women in the digital age — ECWC16 provides attendees an exclusive opportunity to:

  • Meet and greet practitioners and decision-makers from leading tech, consulting and public policy organisations in Europe and the world;
  • Participate in a job fair just with hundreds of top university, masters and PhD candidates, and recruiters from Europe and beyond;
  • Network and connect with Europe’s largest community focused on building the digital future and guaranteeing the place of women in it.

Community-Building: In particular, ECWC16 seeks to ignite a pan-European community engaged in promoting European digital competitiveness who are:

  • Women*; and
  • European university bachelors, masters or PhD program students; and/or
  • in Computer Science or other study disciplines; and/or
  • Early, mid- or advanced-career professionals;

*anyone who identifies as a woman.

Partners and Participants:  If you would like to be involved as an organisation or individual in any of the DLI activities or in the wider ECWC16 event, please contact us!

2015 European Ada Award-winners

On 14 December in Luxembourg, the Digital Leadership Institute and its partners – the Council for European Professional Informatics Societies, DIGITALEUROPE, the European Centre for Women and Technology, and European SchoolNetannounced winners of the 2015 European Ada Awards, recognising outstanding girls and women in digital studies and careers in Europe, and the organisations who support them.  The 2015 Ada Awards ceremony took place at the opening for a high-level eskills and entrepreneurship event as part of the Luxembourg presidency of the Council of the European Union.

2015 European Ada Award winners and finalists were recognised in the following categories:

NiamhScanlonWinner – 13 years old:  Niamh from Ireland

Niamh, 13, learned to code at CoderDojo when she was nine and she loves to build websites and apps that help people. When she was 11 she developed an award-winning app to help the drivers of electric cars. For three years Niamh has mentored at CoderDojo in Dublin City University, where she helps other young people – and particularly girls – to learn how to create with technology. She is a member of the Digital Youth Council in Ireland and she would like to see more coding and technology taught in schools.

YasminWinner – 14 years old:  Yasmin from England

Yasmin is a fourteen year old who has been programming for six years. She regularly builds projects with the Raspberry Pi computer, and volunteers to run workshops for young people to learn how to code using the Pi. As well as this, she runs a programming club during her school lunch breaks for younger pupils, to hopefully increase the uptake of Computer Science at her school.

Winner:  Janneke Niessen, Improve Digital, from the NetherlandsFoto janneke niessen

Janneke is a female serial technology entrepreneur who, next to her role of Chief Innovation Officer at Improve Digital, also makes big efforts to help other entrepreneurs and is a strong advocate for women in tech. She is mentor for startups, angel investor and regularly speaks at events to share her experience in building a high-growth international technology company. She is co-initiator of Inspiring Fifty, that makes female role models in technology more visible. She recently published a novel for young girls (10-14) to create a role model for them and show them how great and fun technology is and how many possibilities it offers.

First Runner-Up:  Monique Morrow, Cisco, from SwitzerlandMonique Morrow

Monique Morrow is the Chief Technology Officer for New Frontiers at Cisco that uniquely focuses on empowering women through the intersection of research, economics and technology execution.  Her current focus is spearheading an Internet of Women movement as an opportunity for women worldwide to collectively shape the future of the Internet powered by a SHE (Supercritical Human Elevated) technology platform.

Second Runner-Up:  Nicole Wajer, Cisco, from the NetherlandsNWajer

In her work, Nicole supports account teams and partners that need her technical expertise.  She is passionate about the Internet of Things (IoT), IPv6 and Security, and is currently playing with new technology e.g Sensors in her own home.  Nicole is a Champion of Change for her passionate work in the Industrial Automation space, and is a frequent blogger and attendee at the four annual Dutch Hacker Conferences.

vhtograbWinner:  VHTO, The Netherlands:
VHTO, the Dutch national expert organisation on girls/women and science/technology, makes an effort in many different ways to increase the involvement of women and girls in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Every year VHTO organises the Dutch Girlsday together with 300 IT and technical companies. In 2015, 9,525 girls participated! To increase the participation of girls in Computer Science specifically, VHTO created the Digivita program for girls (age 8-18) which took place in in six cities in 2014, and carried out the Digivita Summer Camp in 2015. In 2014 VHTO reached 55,210 Dutch children through projects in primary and secondary education.

TravisFoundation-1 Runner-Up:  Travis FoundationRailsgirls Summer of Code, Germany: 

Travis Foundation runs Rails Girls Summer of Code for the third year in a row now – providing stipends for women all over the world to work on Open Source projects. The grassroots initiative is a hands-on solution for the problem of women being underrepresented in Open Source and Tech in general. With Rails Girls Summer of Code we are not only changing women’s careers, diversifying Tech Communities and building safer environments for women in Tech – we are also creating the much-needed role models in IT, so that future generations can follow suit.

Congratulations to all the 2015 European Ada Awards nominees, finalists and winners in every category, and thank you to our Award Partners and supporters of the 2015 European Ada AwardsAmazon Web Services, Facebook, Google, HP and SAP!  Please contact us with questions or inquiries on how to  support the Ada Awards and the larger mission of the Digital Leadership Institute.

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DLI Promotes Girls in Tech at ICT2015

On 20-22 October 2015, more than 4500 people will converge on Lisbon to attend ICT2015, Europe’s largest ICT event. DLI board members, Ms. Cheryl Miller and Ms. Rosanna Kurrer, will host the Women in ICT booth at ICT2015, and DLI will organize “Ada200,” a special networking session to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Lady Ada Lovelace — the first computer programmer in the world, a woman and a European.  DLI and its partners will showcase European women role models in ICT and carry out a speed-mentoring activity to encourage young girls toward digital studies and careers.

ECThe program for the Ada200 Networking Session at ICT2015 is as follows:

To participate in, partner or sponsor the Ada200 Networking Session at ICT2015, please contact us!

httpv://vimeo.com/126954305