TEKLA – A Unique Initiative which Addresses Gender Equality in Education and Workplace and Inspires Women of Next Gen into STEM

Caroline Dahl - Technology Innovator at RISE, Madeleine Sjostedt - Director General of the Swedish Institute, Their Majesties The King and Queen of Sweden with students at Tekla Workshop
-A unique initiative which addresses gender equality in education and workplace-

On the occasion of the State Visit by Their Majesties King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden, Team Sweden, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, FICCI Ladies organization and Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog organized the Tekla Festival in Mumbai.

India and Sweden have long-standing diplomatic and trade relationships. Both countries are committed to the ‘2030 Agenda’ and have respectively played important parts in shaping the goals.  Whilst Sweden is the first country in the world to pursue a feminist foreign policy, India actively works towards achieving the fifth Sustainable Development Goal (‘Gender Equality’) for example through girls’ education and increasing female labour force participation.

Ms. SigbrittKarlsson, President of KTH Royal Institute of Technology said “Even in tech-savvy Sweden, we struggle to engage females in technology. The mission to attract more women and girls to STEM studies and careers is about tapping into as much human talent and potential as possible. The longer this imbalance persists, the more society loses. Encouraging an early interest in technology cuts a path toward strengthening our society and ensuring that our university can develop competence and produce research at the highest possible levels.”

Encouraging a girl’s early interest in technology cuts a path toward strengthening our society and ensuring that the initiative can develop competence and produce research at the highest possible levels. The Tekla Festival was founded by Swedish recording artist Robyn 2015 in partnership with KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm with the aim of getting more & more girls involved in STEM.

“Tekla is a Swedish initiative, but the values of Tekla are universal. The global gender gap within the tech world represents lost opportunities for millions of girls and women. But it’s not only a question of gender equality. Surveys show that the economy will grow if women get to contribute. Our mission is to attract more girls and women to participate in the tech sector. For the benefit of us all,”Ms. Madeleine Sjöstedt, Director-General of the Swedish Institute added.

This year, under the guidance of Caroline Dahl, PhD, Technology Innovator at RISE, Chairman at Stockholm Makerspace and Board Member of Makers of Sweden the Tekla organized a workshop, where girls of age between 11 and 15 from schools of Mumbai took opportunity to explore, learn and enjoy STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).

“It is important to introduce girls to different kinds of technologies and logistics for them to both explore and work in STEM. Tekla’s vision is to make girls learn about electronics.” Ms. Dahl said.’ The workshop was followed by Tekla and Gender Parity Dialogueon underrepresentation of women in technology and ways of empowering women and girls within the STEM sectorwith key speakers including MsCaroline Dahl, Madeleine Sjöstedt – Director General of the Swedish Institute, MsHarjinder Kaur Talwar – President of FICCI-FLO, MsYlva Berg – CEO of Business Sweden, MsAnjali Raina – Executive Director of Harvard Business School, MsIngrid EeldeKoivisto – Secretary General and Founder of Pratham Sweden, MrPeter Betzel – CEO of IKEA India and MsSrimathyKesan – PhD, Founder and CEO of Space Kidz India.