SHARJAH, (WAM) — Ohood bint Khalfan Al Roumi, Minister of State for Government Development and The Future, honoured the winners of the Women in Tech MENA Awards, during a ceremony held in partnership between the Sharjah Research, Technology and Innovation Park (SRTIP) and Women in Tech.
The award, which is one of seven regional awards covering various areas of the globe, celebrates talented women from around the world who innovate, inspire and transform the technology sector.
Held under the theme, “Women in Green”, the event was attended by Hussain Al Mahmoudi, CEO of STRIP, and several leading experts, entrepreneurs and the award’s female nominees.
The awards were introduced by Ayumi Moore Aoki, Founder and CEO of Women in Tech, who affirmed the need to increase the presence of women in technology.
The eight winners were the Uplifting Syrian Women Initiative in the Most Impactful Initiative Award; Fatma Atawna, CEO of Siraj in the Best Ally Award; Aida Kandil, CEO of MyTindy in the Start-up Award; Wesam Sarhan, Co-Founder of Colibri Care in the ID and E Disruptor’s Award; Mirna Arif, Country General Manager of Microsoft in the Global Leadership Award; Dr. Fatmah Boothman, Associate Professor at the King AbdulAziz University in the Lifetime Achievement Award; Amna Usman Choudhry, Financial Economist and Strategist for Blockchain at Metaverse and Web 3.0 in the Woman in Web3 Award, and Uditi Sharma, Founder and Executive Director in the Aspiring Teen Award.
Al Roumi highlighted the key role of women in shaping the future of technology, noting that the UAE has devoted significant attention to empowering women to actively engage in shaping the future of vital sectors, especially the technology sector.
She also highlighted the UAE’s pioneering experience in empowering Emirati women in technology, as they account for 56 percent of Emirati government university graduates in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Al Roumi added that the Women in Tech Award recognises women who lead the technology sector and inspires other women to actively participate in this vital sector, stressing that the partnership between the Sharjah Research, Technology and Innovation Park and Women in Tech is a leading model of global partnerships aimed at encouraging women to participate in various fields of technology.
She also congratulated the winners of the award’s eight categories and commended their achievements, which reflect the overall capacities of women and inspires other women to strive for excellence in the technology sector.
In his welcome address, Al Mahmoudi said, “Hosting the Women in Tech MENA Awards is a milestone moment for us, because it reflects our deep commitment to gender equity and women’s empowerment. We are happy to say that more than 50 percent of the SRTIP workforce are women, some holding senior positions in technology, engineering and labs. Our commitment is also evident in our scheme for women entrepreneurs at SRTIP, under which we grant them subsidies and special benefits.”
“To make the Women in Tech MENA Awards a memorable event, we have lined up high-profile speakers who will enhance the prestige of the event with their insights and shared experiences. The keynotes and panels will offer a rich harvest of ideas, which would go a long way in promoting women’s empowerment in the UAE and the region,” he added.
Panel discussions held before the presentation of the awards provided interesting insights into the role of women in technology. The panel on “Gender equity and climate change, an intersectional approach to sustainability” explored how women and other underserved groups are disproportionately impacted by the global climate crisis, and are uniquely positioned to help achieve sustainability. The panel’s participants were Nadia Mannell, General Partner at Seed South Capital; Geraldine Wessing, Chief Political Analyst at Shell; Cecelia Carlsward, Founding Partner at Violet Hill and Co, and Tatiana Abella, Founder and Managing Director of Goumbook FZE.
A second panel on “Driving inclusion through innovation” discussed how the MENA region is driving innovation while considering human diversity and building inclusive economies.