The first-ever Alter State Nordic-Baltic Women Innovation Sprint kicks off on November 19, 5 PM (EET). 33 formed teams, featuring more than 200 participants from 16 countries around the world, will meet for the first time this Thursday for the virtual opening event.
Best European Innovator 2019 at the opening event of Alter State
The Opening Event of the Alter State will be highlighted by an interview with the 2019 European Year-Innovator Irina Borodina, who is Lithuanian. Irina states that this evaluation opened up opportunities to meet other women innovators who inspired her with their enthusiasm, passion for creation, and the innovations they designed by themselves.
During the first international Alter State Innovation Sprint, participants will be invited to experiment and try out ideas that will help them meet global challenges in a variety of industries. “The ideas presented by the participants cover a wide range of topics: from biofuel production from algae, platforms to improve communication between doctors and patients, and educational solutions for girls,” says Alter State co-founder Justina Klyvienė.
Special attention to the popularization of science, technology and engineering
The 3-week innovation sprint will include intensive training and mentorship sessions where several dozens of professional mentors will lead the teams through the process of ideation, prototype building and testing, business model development, and sales pitch.
“Today, as the automation of technical work is gaining a bigger acceleration, the business has the opportunity to focus on the development of sustainable inventions and innovations. For this reason, technological and engineering professions are becoming increasingly relevant. However, the popularity of the mentioned professions is not growing as fast as it wanted – apparently, it is due to concerns about future employment opportunities and stereotypes that such professions are not suitable for women. In order to increase the popularity of these professions, businesses and universities must cooperate in creating study programs and jobs. Of course, these are long-lasting processes, which fruits we will bear in the future, but they are necessary to ensure the competitiveness of business and the country,” says Živilė Skibarkienė, Director and Member of the Board of the Organizational Development Service of Ignitis Group.
Aiming to induce the leadership of women’s innovation
The Nordic countries are often seen as an example when it comes to equal rights and opportunities. However, the current situation of the Covid-19 pandemic has pushed all efforts and achievements in improving women’s entrepreneurship and participation in innovation decades back.
“The pandemic has shown that we cannot solve global challenges alone. Together, we need to find ways to prepare for future crises, to achieve a better state of gender equality and country prosperity. In recent decades, the Nordic policy approach has significantly improved gender equality in the labour market. I am happy that this initiative lets to find common solutions in our region for both adults and young people, and also to bring the Nordic and Lithuanian approaches to gender equality and diversity even closer,” says Helén Nilsson, Director of the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Lithuania.
Šarūnė Smalakytė, the Head of the financial technology & innovation center – Rockit, notes that the integration of women in the field of Financial Technologies over the past five years is a huge, significant, and positive step for the development of the ecosystem itself, company growth and product development.
“In companies where the numbers of men and women are similar, the work culture and even the adaptability of a product or service itself is very different as it is viewed from different angles. I am glad that soon I will be able to share my experience and knowledge with other women who want to improve in the field of innovation, “ – says Šarūnė Smalakytė, the Head of Rockit.
Support from International Innovation & Technology companies
The Nordic-Baltic Women Innovation Sprint is initiated by Alter State, an international platform that brings together individuals, teams, and organizations from around the globe to gain leadership, innovation & STEAM skills through focused sprints, one step at a time. The project is supported by the international energy company – Ignitis Group, the financial technology & innovation center – Rockit, the innovation laboratory – Future Leadership, and the Nordic Council of Ministers Office in Lithuania.
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