Date: 31/05/2018

Women in Tech – Closing Event

According to the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, 90 per cent of girls in Serbian elementary schools show an interest in digital technologies. But that interest drops during secondary education, and only 15 percent of them end up in that area.

A three-month mentoring program "Women in Tech" conducted by the American Chamber of Commerce in Serbia (AmCham) and the US Department of Commerce together with ICT Hub and Impact Hub, was successfully completed with the closing event, Perspectives of Women in Technology, held at the US Embassy.

The event was attended by female high school students from Belgrade who had the opportunity to hear about the professional experience of Tatjana Matić, State Secretary, Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, and Danijela Trkulja, Director of Gartner for Serbia. During ten-minute mentoring sessions, the students talked with Women in Tech program participants about starting a career in technology, the most common challenges on the road to success, but also about the creative side of this industry.

"Today, when both girls and boys use smart phones and computers, gender orientation when choosing a digital profession seems to be impossible. However, at the end of elementary and secondary school, most girls do not opt for these professions, due to their belief that they do not have sufficient abilities. It is, therefore, important that the educational system, the state and the media use their influence to increase this awareness and promote and encourage reduction of the gender gap in the technology sector. Because fewer women today in IT means fewer women in all innovative economic branches that will be developed from the IT sector. In a social sense, this gender gap will also be produced by fewer women in paid professions. Women will simply not benefit from digitization, " said State Secretary Matić.
"What distinguishes this program from others dealing with the topic of digital transformation of society is to look at this process from the perspective of women employees in this sector who contribute to these changes in society," concluded Zorica Mihajlović, Senior Commercial Specialist of the US Embassy.

"The Women in Tech platform was created to connect successful and accomplished women from the business world and start-up community, ready to overcome the prejudices of the technology and digital industries. Bearing in mind that digitization has already pervaded all spheres of life and business, the idea is that through the synergy of the state and the private sector, we inspire and empower girls who will take leadership positions in our society in several years,” said Diana Gligorijević, greeting the audience for AmCham.