Catalyzing Innovation for Women

Article Date

09 March 2010

Article Author

By ICRW Communications Staff

Media Contact

Anne McPherson

Vice President, Global Communications email [email protected]

As part of its annual celebration of International Women’s Day, the International Center for Research (ICRW) on Women on March 8 convened a panel of experts to discuss how social and technological innovations can empower women and achieve gender equality.

The basis of the discussion was an ICRW study that demonstrates how cutting-edge ideas – everything from a foot-pedaled water pump to birth control pills – can be game-changers for women’s lives. Anju Malhotra, co-author of the paper and ICRW’s vice president of research, innovation and impact, gave an overview of the study’s findings prior to the discussion.

The panelists were Walter Bender, executive director of Sugar Labs and co-founder of the One Laptop per Child Association; Matthew Bishop, American business editor and New York bureau chief of The Economist; Diana Wells, president of Ashoka, and Malhotra. The discussion was moderated by Susan V. Berresford, former president of the Ford Foundation.

Panelists tackled a variety of issues during the nearly two-hour discussion, including how to overcome barriers to getting innovations in women’s hands, the role of the media in promoting social entrepreneurship and the future, untapped areas for bold innovation.