«There have to be role models, you can’t be what you can’t see.» The words come from Reshma Saujani, an American lawyer and politician and founder of the technology organization Girls Who Code.
Girls Who Code is a non-profit that aims to support and increase the number of women in computer science and equip young women with the computer science skills needed to take advantage of 21st century opportunities.
An absolutely essential objective. According to the report Women in the Digital Economy’, conducted by DigitalES, in Spain. only 2% of employed women work in the technology and digital sector. In addition, women’s participation figures in the sector are falling: only 14.6% of graduates in technological studies are women.
And yet the average salary in the technology sector is much higher than in other sectors: 22.1% among women. But despite having more qualified and better paid positions than other areas of work, it is still not attractive to many women.
Among other things, this is due to a lack of known references. Role models, as Reshma Saujani calls them, who in an inspiring talk that has gone viral, talks about the need to reward bravery over perfection.
And yet, there are models. Pioneering women who dared to challenge the rules of their time and claim their place in the world of technology, and who are already a mirror in which the next generations can and should look. As an example, here are six selected by the UN. Here are some of his achievements.
- Lucy Peng
She is one of the founders of the e-commerce company Alibaba Group. At just 46, she is one of 88 self-made female billionaires who have defied and broken «glass ceilings», and one of the youngest to do so.
- Juliana Rotich
Rotich is a Kenyan engineer who has developed web tools for crowdsourcing crisis information and coverage of environmental issues.
An information technology expert, she is co-founder of Ushahidi, a free software project that uses crowdsourced geolocation, cell phone and web-based data sharing to provide information in times of crisis.
- Blanca Treviño
CEO and founder of Softtek, a Mexican company focused on information technology and the largest independent IT services provider in Latin America.
Treviño has been dedicated to promoting the importance of women’s inclusion in the business world, especially in the technology sector.
The entrepreneur highlights five tips for young entrepreneurs:
- Connect with the meaning of transcendence
- Spread your dreams
- Integrity is essential, especially in difficult times.
- The leader can never be satisfied
- Give yourself the opportunity to have absolutely irrational dreams.
- Mary Lou Jepsen
Pioneer of optics, image processing and graphics hardware.
She is head of the Display Division at Google X. She is also founder and former CEO of Pixel Qi, a manufacturer of high-performance, low-power, sunlight-readable displays for mobile devices. She was the co-founder and first chief technology officer of One Laptop per Child.
She has been recognized as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine and one of the 10 thinkers in science and technology by CNN.
- Ada Lovelace
The mathematician Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace, lived and worked in the 19th century. She is best known for her work on Charles Babbage’s analytical machine.
He deduced and predicted the ability of computers to surpass simple numerical calculations, while others, including Babbage, focused only on these capabilities.
- Mariam Al-Asturlabi
The Syrian astronomer developed and manufactured astrolabes, an astronomical instrument for navigation, during the 10th century.
The astrolabe has been described as the iPhone of the Middle Ages.