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The hidden realities facing female digital entrepreneurs put under the spotlight

Missing in Action-Women and Digital Enterprise

The hidden challenges facing women aspiring to be digital entrepreneurs, and the lack of research on their experiences, will be under the microscope at a two day event at Nottingham University Business School on Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 November 2015. 

Missing in Action - Women and Digital Enterprise in the UK, led by Digital Women UK, the Haydn Green Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Dr Angela Martinez Dy, will provide a ‘thought space’ for established and aspiring female digital entrepreneurs, creatives and academics to develop strategies for change.  

Challenges facing women

According to techUK, statistics show that there hasn’t been any significant improvement in the representation of women in tech in the last two decades. Particular areas of concern include, appointing women to board positions, encouraging more women to study and start careers in STEM subjects and challenging tech companies to actively encourage and support women’s careers. 

Joy Francis, Co-founder of Digital Women UK, said: “Research in the US on women and the digital sphere is very revealing in that women, especially women of colour, are driving innovation and enterprise. Yet in the UK you are hard pressed to find clear information about who these women are and the challenges they face. Missing in Action will showcase some of these hidden women who are largely operating within an information vacuum. Women tell us repeatedly that they feel unsupported and need access to modern mentoring programmes, funding advice and digital direction.”  

Jacqueline de Rojas, President of techUK and Computer Weekly’s Most Influential Woman in UK IT, said: “Events like Missing in Action are vital. They shine a light on the challenges faced by women in the tech industry. While there are many exciting opportunities in the tech sector, currently very few women are attracted to and retained by our industry. Only by providing the right support and encouragement can we truly increase diversity and encourage more women into the digital world.”

Inspiring sessions

Event participants will have access to inspiring talks and coaching sessions with leading women in digital and STEM, such as Anne-Marie Imafidon, Head Stemette at the Stemettes project, Joséphine Goube, Co-managing Director, Girls in Tech, and Lyndsey Britton, Co-founder of Campus North.

Anne-Marie Imafidon, Head Stemette at the Stemettes project, said: “It's important to make sure that women across the UK feel empowered to get digital and create sustainable organisations and companies in the field, to help solve problems in our society. We definitely need more widely publicised success stories of women and girls in digital enterprise. The more we can expose society to female role models, the opportunities in this space and ways to access them, the better.”

Professor Susan Marlow, Gender and Entrepreneurship expert at Nottingham University Business School, added: “This exciting event breaks new ground by drawing attention to the invisibility of women as digital entrepreneurs. Showcasing such a high profile and prestigious range of speakers demonstrates that women are making a great contribution to digital enterprise; their ingenuity and innovation deserve far greater recognition. This event is a small step to celebrating such achievements.” 

About the conference

'Missing in Action - Women and Digital Enterprise in the UK' is a two day event taking place at Nottingham University Business School on 21 and 22 November 2015. Priced at £25, the event is a collaboration between Digital Women UK, the Haydn Green Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Dr Angela Martinez Dy. Sponsored by NEMODE, an initiative of Research Councils UK (RCUK), and supported by the Gender and Enterprise Network, the aim is for the findings from the event to lead to future research and initiatives on women and digital entrepreneurship in the UK.

Over the two days participants will be part of roundtable debates, have the opportunity to engage with expert panels of digital academics and creative entrepreneurs and come up with solutions to improve the digital landscape for women.

Book a place and get more information


Posted on Wednesday 18th November 2015




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