THE Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Asean Women Entrepreneurs’ Network (AWEN) will bring together women from Asean member states for a conference focused on technology and innovation, in line with the celebration of International Women’s Month.
As part of the Asean Business and Investment Program led by DTI, the event tagged as Steam Ahead in Asean: A Forum for Women and Technology will be held on March 16 and 17 at the Microtel by Wyndham at the Mall of Asia in Manila.
It is part of the DTI’s STEAM refers to Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math.
Delegates and speakers from various Asean countries with representatives from various technology-driven enterprises are expected to be at the two-day event to give women more ideas about opportunities in careers centered on technology and innovation.
The Asean members consist of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam.
Studies have shown that women who pursue careers in Steam are most likely to earn 30 percent more income than in non-Steam careers.
DTI, as a prime advocate of advancement of tech-driven businesses in the country, leads the conference as part of its Slingshot program that aims to help the growth and development of the startup community in the Philippines.
Asean Women Entrepreneurs’ Network (AWEN) is a working group composed of women entrepreneurs and associations working to promote women’s economic empowerment in the region.
The Philippines currently chairs AWEN which has a network of almost a hundred organizations in the 10 Asean member-states.
USAID Asean Connectivity through Trade and Investment, the co-sponsor of the Conference, supports AWEN’s advocacy to empower women through business and enterprise and to improve access to finance and markets.
It also organized the network of women in 2014 and supports its projects for sustainable action plans for regional integration through technology.
Vietnam first chaired AWEN until May 2016 when the leadership was turned over to the Philippines for the period 2016-2018. It the 50th anniversary of Asean and the Philippines as the host country.
The steering committee is composed of representatives from the DTI, Philippine Commission on Women, Department of Foreign Affairs, and Women’s Business Council of the Philippines in coordination with the Asean National Organizing Council.