Digital technologies are an essential part of our everyday lives. The average number of daily digital interactions per connected person is increasing dramatically: from around 300 interactions in 2010, it is forecasted to reach almost five thousand interactions by 2025. The COVID-19 crisis, which revolutionised the way people and companies use ICT and other digital technologies to work and interact, highlighted the urgency to promote gender balance in this sector. Equal labour market opportunities and treatment at work, and striving for gender balance in the digital sector, is of utmost importance not only to the EU’s and the world’s economy, but also as a matter of plain justice for all the talented women and girls choosing a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) career path.
In this context and on the occasion of International Women’s Day, the European Union Delegation to Singapore dedicates its annual Human Rights Seminar to exchange views on how to best ensure that we work towards a fair digital transition, leaving no one behind. This year’s seminar will address the existing gender gap in the ICT sector and raise awareness on the effects technology has played in changing women’s roles in society. It will point out that increasing women’s participation in the digital sector can have an important impact on combating gender inequalities, stereotypes and discrimination, improving access to the labour market for women and their working conditions, as well as addressing the gender pay gap. We will examine how ICT can be a long-term solution to promote female employment at European, Singaporean, and International level; and although gender inequality exists in the digital sphere, with better collaboration between the Public and Private sector stakeholders, we can try to close the gap.
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09:30 Opening Remarks
H.E. Iwona Piorko, European Union Ambassador to Singapore
09:35 Keynote Address
Ms June Lowery-Kingston, Head of Unit at Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology of the European Commission, responsible for “Accessibility, Multilingualism & Safer Internet.” Board Member of the Task Force on Equality
09:45 Keynote Address
Sun Xueling, Minister of State for Social and Family Development, and Education.
09:55 Emerging Issues: What’s in it for Women
Moderator: Dr Chew Han Ei is Senior Research Fellow at IPS Social Lab at the Institute of Policy Studies. He is concurrently a Research Consultant for UNESCO
Panel 1. Gender equality opportunities and risks of digitalisation: a safer digital space for users by protecting fundamental rights online. Women in identity
∙ H.E. Judit Pach, Ambassador of Hungary to Singapore
∙ Mrs Helen Chua, WiD Ambassador for Singapore Chapter; senior sales director, NEC Asia Pacific, Women in Identity
∙ Dr. Elmie Nekmat , Associate Professor at the Department of Communications and New Media. He is concurrently a Principal Investigator for the Center for Trusted Internet and Community (CTIC), Research Associate at the Center for Family and Population Research (CFPR), and Resident Fellow at Ridge View Residential College in NUS
∙ Ms Georgette Tan, President of United Women Singapore
Opening thoughts by the panellists will be followed by 20-minutes moderated Q&A.
11:30 Concluding remarks
Mr Wan Sie Lee, Director at IMDA Singapore
12:00 End of the seminar