You are here


Virtual Lecture on International Women’s Day

“DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality”


Tuesday, March 7, 2023

11 am – 12:30 pm IST


To Register, Click here




The theme for International Women’s Day, 8 March 2023 (IWD 2023) is, “DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality.” It is aligned with the priority theme for the 67th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW-67) by the United Nations (UN), “Innovation and technological change, and education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls.” 


IWD 2023 recognizes and celebrates women and girls who are championing the advancement of transformative technology and digital education. It will explore the impact of the digital gender gap on widening economic and social inequalities. The event will also spotlight the importance of protecting the rights of women and girls in digital spaces and addressing online and ICT-facilitated gender-based violence.


The International Cooperative Alliance Asia and Pacific Committee on Women will organise a virtual lecture to commemorate IWD 2023 on March 7, 2023. It will be held in two parts:


  • What do we mean by digital inclusion for women in co-op business?
  • How do we protect women's rights and safety in digital spaces?


According to the UN, digital inclusion is defined as “equitable, meaningful, and safe access to use, lead, and design of digital technologies, services, and associated opportunities for everyone, everywhere.”


Some broad intervention areas to promote digital inclusion include:


  • Digital literacy and skills
  • Digital products and services
  • Digital communications
  • Digital marketing
  • Information and education on rights and safe practices in digital spaces
  • Information and access to preventive and protective measures and tools in digital spaces

Digitalisation and adoption of technology has become integral for any enterprise to grow and can be driven by a lot of factors. For cooperatives, this can be driven by evolving member needs, increasing competition in the market, changing business goals, and debilitating external shocks such as the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has brought to the fore the significance of digitalisation and the need for digital inclusion for everyone, especially women and marginalised groups. Women forming a large part of cooperative businesses, need to be part of this shift towards digitalisation. Bringing women into technology will result in more creative solutions and will also have more potential for innovations promoting gender equality and meeting women’s needs.


However, the adoption of technology differs across countries and sectors. In the Asia and Pacific region, a large number of cooperatives are in rural areas where technology and the internet are not easy to penetrate; members are semi-literate and are not trained or comfortable using technology; and members and even the management, on an average, are middle-aged who are often reluctant to switch and adapt. At the same time, digitalisation adds costs not only to buy equipment, software, maintenance, and upgradation but also to educate and train members and the management to efficiently use the same.


The virtual lecture will look at  issues around digitalisation and address some of the following question – Why is digital inclusion important for women across all levels in cooperative businesses? Is digital inclusion enough to make women feel empowered? Given  online and ICT-based frauds, crimes, and violence against women are common and publicly known, what are the ways to protect women’s rights and safety in the digital space?  


This lecture will be a starting point for these discussions, prioritizing women who are  a large segment of the cooperative ecosystem.



About the speakers


Ms. Anuradha Ganapathy, Research Associate at IT for Change. Ms. Ganapathy is a mid-career professional who recently transitioned from the corporte to the development sector. She has a masters from SOAS University of London in Anthropology of Development and Sustainability. She also has a Postgraduate Diploma in Management from India, a Postgraduate Certification in Gender, Sexuality and Society from Birkbeck, University of London, and a Postgraduate Certification in Technology Policy. Her work interests lie in the areas of the digital gender divide, technology adoption at the margins, digital and economic justice and platforms for development.


Ms. Malavika Rajkumar, Project Associate at IT for Change. Ms. Rajkumar works on intersections of social media governance, digital justice and the law. Her main areas of research include platform accountability, social media regulatory governance, women's rights, gender based violence and information design. Previously she was a Research Fellow at Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy, Delhi/ Content Lead for its legal -tech initiative Nyaaya. She is a graduate of Symbiosis International University and holds a B.B.A.LLB degree. She also writes regularly on publications such as Citizen Matters, Live Law and Firstpost.


Registration link







Event start date:
Friday, February 24, 2023
Event end date:
Friday, February 24, 2023
Venue: Zoom Meeting