WiTaR Introduction:

The “Women in telecommunications and research (WiTaR)” Working Group (WG) focuses on promoting gender equality, inclusion and empowerment in the 6G Research & Innovation (R&I) community. This WG was initiated as part of the European-founded flagship project Hexa-X in February 2021 and then was expanded for the participation of the whole 5G Infrastructure PPP community in June 2021. The SNS WiTaR WG was launched in Fall 2023. The key purpose of this WG is to stepping forward into closing gender gaps and increasing women participation in as many social fields as possible in the 6G R&I community. The road to close gender equality is still a very long one, evidence that the participation of women in Hexa-X was only 20%. This clearly captures the European industry and academia needs for a major change in relation to their policies that should be implemented in direction of closing the gender gap. By fostering a supportive and inclusive environment, WiTaR seeks to break down barriers and inspire the next generation of women leaders in telecommunications and research. Through its efforts, WiTaR aims to catalyze positive change and create a more equitable and diverse workforce in these vital sectors.

WiTaR Objectives

  • Become “reference” point in the SNS Programme and develop awareness across the overall SNS Members/Community to ensure a gender-balanced approach in European R&I activities.
  • Promote visibility of women and their achievements and encourage them in engagement in leadership positions.
  • Support role models for both soft and hard skills of junior researchers and students in order to contribute to 6G-IA and SNS actions related to ICT Skills, ensuring that ICT missing Skills in EU also systematically address missing ICT women skills.
  • Contribute to engage more women in 6G research in various technical topics in particular Sustainability – Societal work. This includes participations to panels, interviews, etc. as well as contributing to the definition of 6G use-cases ensuring the minimization of bias and enriching the set of identified use-cases.
  • Interact with SNS and 6G-IA members, analysis of potential gender reported issues and contribution to the issues solving.

Why to become a member of WiTaR?

Becoming a member of the WiTaR (Women in Telecommunications and Research) working group presents a unique opportunity to actively contribute to the advancement of gender equality, inclusion, and empowerment within the 6G Research & Innovation (R&I) community. Initiated under the European-founded flagship project, Hexa-X, and subsequently expanded to involve the entire 5G PPP community, WiTaR stands as a beacon for fostering positive change. By joining this dynamic group, individuals align themselves with a collective effort aimed at closing gender gaps and amplifying women’s participation across various social spheres within the 6G R&I landscape. Moreover, WiTaR serves as a platform for advocating for transformative policies within European industry and academia, driving forward the imperative need for substantive changes in fostering gender equality. Embracing diversity and promoting inclusive practices, WiTaR offers a collaborative environment where members can contribute to shaping a more equitable and vibrant future for the entire R&I community.

How to become a member of WiTaR?

Becoming a member of the WiTaR working group is easy:

Just click the blue button Below labeled ‘Apply to join the WiTaR WG’  and fill out and submit the application form with all the required details.

Once submitted, your application will be promptly reviewed by the WG leader(s). You can expect to hear back from them within 5 working days.

Future WiTaR Events:

  • 2024 IEEE PIMRC
  • 2024 ICTON
  • 5G Techritory 2024

Previous WiTaR Events:

On the Tuesday, 4 June 2024, WiTaR held a 1h40 convened session to explain the EU-level initiative that promotes gender equality, inclusion and empowerment in the 6G Research & Innovation (R&I) community.

Session Chair:
  • Bahare Masood Khorsandi (Nokia, DE)
  • Marie-Helene Hamon (Orange, FR)
  • Irene Alepuz Benaches (UPV, ES)
  • Ishita Mishra (Institute PIIU, IT)
  • Pooja Mohnani (EURESCOM, DE)
  • Marja Matinmikko-Blue (Univ. of Oulu, FI)
  • Didier Bourse (Nokia, FR)

Figure1: Invitation WiTAR IWD 2024

On 8th March WiTaR celebrated international women´s day in online mode. The main aim of this working group is to create awareness about gender diversity, inclusion and empowerment in the 6G Research & Innovation (R&I) community.

This year, Women in Telecommunication and Research Working Group (WiTaR) dedicated their session to #inspireInclusion. The session kicked off with the introduction about the group by the working group Chairs Bahare Masood Khorsandi (Nokia) and Marie-Helene (Orange) who welcomed the participants and shared interesting facts about the formation of this working group, its vision and goals. Together we exchanged, discussed and evolved to “why women in telecommunications should be a part of it” and how we could empower each other.

Figure 2: Survey IWD 2024

This was followed by a short survey organized by Pooja Mohnani (EURESCOM) via the tool mentimeter. This survey was collection of facts and provided insights on the representation of women in ICT roles and companies which led to brainstorming discussion on what could be the potential set of actions to foster knowledge exchange and collaboration.

More than 50 participants from diverse background joined the session. There were interesting contributions from other working groups and project representatives. Finally, the session wrapped up with positive feedback and the organizers shared next set of actions which included participation and presentation at EuCNC in a Convened session on Tuesday June 4th, 11:00 – 13:00.

If you are around then don’t miss and join us to bring a change!

Figure 3: Participants IWD 2024

WiTaR had a second convened session as part of EUCNC 2023. The session received really well by large number of participants from different backgrounds from all genders. The session consist of invited speakers from industry and academia as well as panel discussion on the ways to close the gender balance gap in the Telecommunication sector.

The first WiTaR convened session was organized during the EUCNC 2022 conference and kicked-off a series of convened session.

This session was the opportunity to introduce WiTaR, discuss with representatives from industry and academia about solutions to improve gender inclusivity in research community.

WiTaR Postcards

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