Women in Tech: KP launches capacity building projects to encourage female participation

Pakistan can only touch new heights in technology and improve its current digital transformation state by abundant investment in these areas.

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The Government of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa has launched a digital initiative for women, under which 3,000 women will be trained in technology. The first phase of the program has already begun with online tech training of 500 women who previously completed their matriculation, F.A., and B.A. studies.

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Information Technology Board (KPITB), an autonomous government body established under an Act of the K.P. Assembly in 2011 for the promotion of I.T. and ICT in the province, supervises the digital initiative.

K.P. Chief Mahmood Khan’s advisor on S.T. and IT, Zia Bangash, has launched this women-centric capacity building project at the KPIT office Peshawar.

The title of the digital initiative is:

Women Empowerment Through Digital Skills

Why Digital Skills?

In Pakistan, since January 2017, the number of internet users has grown by 27 percent annually, while the number of social media users has increased by 13 percent annually. Regardless of the growth, internet penetration still stands at 29.92 percent, which is lower than the South Asian average of 36 percent.

The following indicators provide an overview of the state of digital transformation in Pakistan, according to the Global Information Technology Report 2016:

  • E-Government Development Index (EGDI) = Pakistan ranks 148 globally (based on a score of 0.3566, which is lower than the world average of 0.55 and the Asian average of 0.5779, but slightly higher than the African average of 0.3423)
  • ICT Development Index (IDI) = Pakistan ranks 143 (based on a score of 3.34)
  • Pakistan’s regional ranking in Asia and the Pacific = 31 (out of 34 countries)
  • Digital Skills = Pakistan ranks 151 in the world
  • Network Readiness Index (NRI) = Pakistan ranks 110 (out of 139 countries)

These meager stats are why Pakistan’s Government is taking initiatives like KPIT and PITB and highly encouraging women participation. Pakistan can only touch new heights in technology and improve its current digital transformation state by abundant investment in these areas.

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