Now in its fifth year, the Girls in ICT initiative of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is a global effort to raise awareness on empowering and encouraging girls and young women to consider studies and careers in Internet and communications technologies.
"The Girls in ICT idea is to spark an interest for ICT-related careers as we try to address the gender imbalance," says Maria Angelica Perez, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Group Function Human Resources.
"Ericsson believes in diversity in all aspects of our business, and our ambition for 2020 is to have one-third of our organization made up of women. We also have more long-term initiatives such as participating in Girls in ICT to try to change mind-set among young people."
To celebrate Girls in ICT, Ericsson will facilitate a host of on- and off-site events around the globe. The company headquarters in Kista, Sweden will host a one-day event for 80 students from high schools around Stockholm, while representatives from the company will be visiting universities and schools around the world to meet with female students and inform them about the possibilities within the ICT sector.
Maria Angelica Perez added: "All kinds of activities and events take place around the globe. We have high school and university visits planned, open houses at several of our Ericsson offices, demonstrations, hands-on activities, panel discussions and career fairs. We want girls and young women to know what career paths are open to them, and the steps they need to take if they want to be part of this fascinating and exciting world of ICT."
- Ericsson has celebrated Girls In ICT Day since its inception in 2010.
- Girls in ICT Day takes place on the fourth Thursday in April every year.
- In 2014 Ericsson will visit campuses around the world, from Germany to Taiwan and Hungary to Korea, to talk to female students.
- Estimates of skills shortages in engineering/ICT suggest that 2 million positions could be filled immediately if there were qualified candidates.
- Ericsson aims to have one third of its workforce made up of female employees by 2020.