MARCH8 LIVE: Closing the STEM gap – day 1

On June 23rd and 24th, Tobacco Dock, London, opened its doors to the MARCH8 LIVE event – we take a look at the speakers who took centre stage on day one

As women make up only 28% of the global workforce in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), we see it as our mission at March8 to share the voices of pioneering women in the sector. 
On June 23rd and 24th, we welcomed our March8 community to Tobacco Dock, London, to indulge in keynote speeches from 11 amazing women, as well as two inspirational panel sessions, two informative fireside chats, and an excellent networking opportunity. For those who weren’t able to attend the event, we’re happy to fill you in on what you missed out on.

Alice Williams, Schneider Electric

Why do we stop asking why: Recrafting the STEM narrative

Alice Williams kicked off the event by sharing why it's so important to support women in tech as their careers evolve and how to do so. As an inclusive industry, Alice explains how to welcome women from diverse backgrounds – from marketing to the military – and why we shouldn’t put people with different lived experiences in rigid boxes.

Anna Brailsford, Code First Girls

Fireside chat: Digital transformation

Anna Brailsford and March8’s Emily Cook sat down to discuss how to support emerging female tech talent in an insightful fireside chat. The pair covered a number of hot topics, including why digital transformation needs to be driven by diverse tech teams, as well as how diversity ensures that we're coding a safe and fair future for all. 

Fannie Delavelle, Bpifrance

Why having women on your board will help your growth

Panel: Systemic Gender Bias Online

As the creator of Make it She, Fannie Delavelle shared how to combat gender bias, while touching upon the importance of parity in making investment decisions and investing in female founders. After her keynote, Fannie was welcomed back to the stage to join the panel on Systemic Gender Bias Online. 

Nina Jane Patel, Kabuni

Towards an understanding of the metaverse 

Nina Jane Patel is on a mission to ensure that the metaverse is a safe and inclusive environment for children to learn, grow and explore. In her keynote, Nina takes us back to 1995 – when the internet first emerged – to explain how the metaverse will change our futures in the same way that the internet did – even if we don’t know it yet. 

Eleanor Ludlam, DAC Beachcroft

Women in law – challenges and strategy

From being excluded from playing football to being paid less than her male counterparts for fulfilling the same role, Eleanor Ludlam shares how she has been treated as a result of her gender over the course of her life and career. Although she shares the many challenges she’s faced through being a female lawyer, she encourages all in positions of authority to ‘lead loudly’ and to make positive change. 

Krishna Desai, Cubic Transportation Systems

The future of transportation: Built through the lens of a women

Krishna Desai started her high-energy talk by highlighting the history of the mobility industry, while explaining why we need more women to join the sector. She continued to explain what we can learn about diversity and inclusion from Transport For London, as well as how to inspire children to enter tech roles.

Katherine Gormley, Resistant AI; Arungalai Anbarasu; Fannie Delavelle, Bpifrance

Panel: Systemic Gender Bias Online

To round up a truly unforgettable day, Katherine Gormley, Arungalai Anbarasu and Fannie Delavelle took to the stage to engage in a panel discussion, focusing on systemic gender bias online.

Kicking off the discussion, Fannie explains that only one in three people on the internet are women, to then address the steps that can be taken to combat unconscious biases online.

Katherine takes over following this to explain how AI systems can potentially learn our unconscious biases and perpetuate them online, before Arungalai shares how we can make the internet a more inclusive place for women.


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