In Europe and Asia’s largest conference (and Career Fair), which is in its 5th year. held in Warsaw, was attended by leading female engineers, programmers, specialists, scientists, entrepreneurs, activists, leaders and startups, students and women at the threshold of their careers, as well as men and all those who support diversity in the STEM, Tech&IT industry
The originator of the meeting of women interested in modern technologies is Dr. Bianka Siwińska, president of the Educational Perspectives Foundation, a recognized non-profit organization that inspires, connects and supports women in technology, science and innovation in Europe and Central Asia, and is partnered by more than 100 of the largest technology companies and the best technical universities in Poland. She decided to bring together all women interested and involved in Tech&IT so that they could exchange experiences and learn from and support each other in their development. The idea for the Perspective Women in Tech Summit, an event that will bring together women from Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia, was conceived in 2017, when the Perspective Educational Foundation’s IT for SHE project received an award for the best action in Europe in the area of digital competence building.
– In my house there have always been computers, robots, technological curiosities, because my dad was the creator of the first magazine about computers in Poland – the famous “Bytek”. Also, in theory, I had very privileged access to this area. On the other hand, I was a girl and it affected my future. It wasn’t me who was encouraged to take an interest in technology, but my older brother. This was how social roles for men and women were approached back then. There were things for boys and – separately – for girls. And even though I was very interested in programming and could sit by my brother for hours to watch him learn to program, no one ever said to me “come on, try it yourself.” – recalls the beginnings of her fascination with IT, the initiator of the conference (pictured) in an interview announcing it, also explaining why promoting science and technology majors among women is so important to her.
– I came up with the campaign “Girls to Polytechnics!”. And I moved hard with it to schools and universities. And then there were more actions, until it was time for a big conference for women in technology.
Technology today is not just a tool, but above all a key area for the development of the world. This is where new ideas, concepts, innovations, solutions are created, through which our world changes. So, if there is no equality in it, if only one homogeneous, i.e. male, group of people will influence the change, then the change will not be adapted to all of us, to the whole, diverse community. And we can see that there are still not enough women in the world of IT&Tech, that there is a so-called “women’s movement”. digital gender gap, as the stereotype still persists that technology is a male domain. Hence, for example, fewer girls choose to go to polytechnics or science majors, hence fewer women in companies that create innovations, push the world forward. Hence few women in key positions in technology companies. And during the conference she asked the question: – Which revolution was the only one in the last 100 years that succeeded? And she answered it herself: – This is a women’s revolution, women have indeed changed and continue to change their social role. Technologies are of great importance here. That’s why we created Summit to push our world towards change.
This year’s edition, which took place at Warsaw’s EXPO XXI (June 14-15), was attended by 11,200 people (more than 9,500 offline) and guests from 88 countries! They were able to participate in 400. mentoring sessions and 56. workshops on technology, careers and soft skills, where 500 speakers shared their experience, and in 32. side events. 200 technology topics were discussed, such as. quantum computers, the future of semiconductors and deep tech, and as many as 15 program events were devoted to artificial intelligence itself (including generative AI), as one of the keynotes was “Be the “I” in A.I.”!
Mark Brzezinski, U.S. ambassador to Poland (pictured on the right with Rafal Trzaskowski), said at the event’s opening ceremony: – Women’s work in artificial intelligence is crucial to the development of non-curved, inclusive technology. That’s why I love the PWIT Summit! You are organizing one of the most prominent conferences for women in technology across Europe. Rafal Trzaskowski, president of the city of Warsaw. Warsaw and one of the special guests at the conference’s opening gala, wrote on Facebook: – I am proud that as a capital city we can be a partner in this event. Warsaw is a woman – unassuming, ambitious, courageous. Warsaw is betting on women. Warsaw is on the side of women. [Perspektywy,] Thank you for your commitment, for your activity, for your great contribution to the development of our city as well.
And Barbara Nowacka, social activist and MP, special guest of the Summit ‘s opening gala (pictured on the right with Justyna Orlowska, Prime Minister’s Plenipotentiary for GovTech) wrote on social media: – Huge congratulations to Bianka Siwińska for preparing such a wonderful event. Girls, the technology industry knows no gender barriers – it’s a place where innovation and creativity are paramount. May your determination, passion and perseverance lead you to achieve your goals. May your presence in the technology industry inspire the next generation of women to follow their dreams.
During the conference, another non-ranking list of TOP-100 Women in Cloud Computing in Poland, i.e. the best female experts (Poles and foreigners working in Poland) professionally involved in cloud technology issues, was announced, following the lists of the most prominent female experts in cyber security, AI and 5G. – Women are not only essential to the growth and success of cloud computing, but are integral to shaping its future. Their diverse perspectives and innovative ideas are key to creating a more inclusive and equitable digital world for all – According to Dr. Bianka Siwińska, the originator of these compilations. This year’s was created with the help of experts from the Information Processing Center – National Research Institute (OPI PIB). Full list of TOP-100 Women in Cloud Computing in Poland: https://womenintechsummit.pl/top-100-women-in-cloud-computing.
It is worth mentioning that special guests included: Francesca Cavallo, author of the global bestseller “Bedtime Stories for Young Rebels,” Maria Klawe, president of Harvey Mudd College, the only college in the world to boast an equal number of female students in STEM fields, and CEOs of key IT companies operating in Poland.
(based on Organizer’s materials)