Technological innovation is the principal driver for improvements in quality of life and economic prosperity, and the engineering profession is central to this innovation. This is according to the President and CEO of IEEE Dr. Karen Bartleson while speaking at the Smart Africa Women’s Summit.
According to Dr. Karen, a well-qualified engineering workforce, supported by the infrastructure and resources necessary to meet the needs of the population, will be the heart of this digital transformation. The need for greater engineering capacity is widely recognized across the African continent. “That’s why there is no such thing as too much support for STEM education and encouraging participation by our young women and girls. There is no such thing as too much time spent on exploring new possibilities to advance technology for the benefit of humanity and there is no such thing as too much support for women in leadership roles: in the classroom, the boardroom, and the corridors of governmental power,” said Dr. Karen.
IEEE strives to bring together – at a local level – the technological innovators who have a desire to learn, collaborate, and give back to their community. The organization already has over 420,000 members – half of them from outside of the United States – as they try to diverse, international community filled with technology professionals of every race, every creed, and every color.
According to Dr. Karen, IEEE recognizes the opportunity to assist in cultivating greater engineering capacity in Africa to advance technology and innovation. “We are committed to providing educational support and technical development to the engineering profession throughout Africa.
Our world – despite the myriad advances in technology that the last century has brought with it – still needs to be changed for the better. Not everyone has access to clean water, or reliable energy, or healthcare,” added Dr. Karen.
Technology can overcome tough challenges. It always has. And at no other point in history have we had more opportunities available to us to improve our world.