UNTIL Finland is one year old!
Where better to celebrate than the startup and tech event SLUSH, where the Finland team was joined by the UNTIL global team in November in Helsinki. UNTIL came to SLUSH to promote diversity and inclusivity in technology.
Watch our video with highlights of UNTIL at SLUSH 2019:
SLUSH week began with the launch of UNTIL’s first report, “Diversity and Inclusion: Tech it or Leave IT”. The report highlighted how employment within the tech industry remains dominated by Caucasian males.
The report concludes with data showing how approaches that include women and minority groups produce stronger results and profits. The report launch was hosted by our friends at Miltton and included a keynote by the Mayor of Helsinki, Mr. Jan Vapaavuori.
The next day, the Finland Lab Manager, Mr. Razi Latif, participated at the “Think Africa’s” "Investing and partnering with African Innovators" event – as judge at the Boost Up competition. The evening was full of networking, innovative problem solving, and winning pitches.
Finland’s Thematic Heads in Education and Health also made important presentations at SLUSH. Education Team Lead Ms. Tiina Neuvonen outlined an exciting new collaboration at xcitED. Health Lead Mr. Ahmed El Saeed spoke at the SlushxHealth event about the “Secondary Use of Social and Health Data in Europe”.
The week in Helsinki is the only time staff from UNTIL’s networks of Labs have been in the same place and they presented themselves and networked at their SLUSH booth.
“It is reassuring to not only see the accomplishments the first lab in Finland has made in its first year, but to also see the labs in Malaysia, Egypt, and India launch and advance on developing innovative technology solutions within the same year. I am confident that next year will witness the unveiling of multiple impactful products as well as labs around the world,” said Mr. Maurizio Gazziola, Head of the Global UNTIL Programme.
UNTIL also organized its own SLUSH high-level side event. That began with a speech broadcast on video from Ms. Atefah Riazi who is the Assistant Secretary-General at the UN Office of Information and Communications Technology and UN Chief Information Technology Officer.
Next Mr. Pradeep Kakkattil, Director, Programme Partnerships and Fundraising, spoke about the significant progress of The Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), and the need for technology and innovation to reach the zero mark.
Then came “Ted” style talks from three inspirational women.
Ms. Sari Stenfors is a futurist who speculated about cyborg societies and the importance of an inclusive tech future.
Ms. Geetha Tharmaratnam, Director at The Abraaj Group, shared her expertise on making societal impact.
The UNTIL Global Partnerships Lead, Ms. Dianne Dane, shared with the audience her observations about women in tech.
UNTIL was also honored to welcome His Excellency, Mr. Ville Skinnari, Finland’s Minister for Development and Foreign Trade. His keynote speech was about the importance of working with youth.
Altogether, UNTIL participated in about a dozen meetings and activities. It was a jam-packed week reflecting our significant progress.
Happy birthday, UNTIL Finland!
"The advances of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, including those brought on by a combination of computing power, robotics, big data and artificial intelligence, are generating revolutions in health care, transport and manufacturing.
I am convinced that these new capacities can help us to lift millions of people out of poverty, achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and enable developing countries to leap‑frog into a better future."
23 March 2018, New York