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Consultation on the Gender Digital Divide report: Karachi


The National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW), in collaboration with the UNFPA, UNDP, UN Women, and Jazz hosted a consultative session on creating a ‘Gender Digital Divide in Pakistan’ report in Karachi on February 21st, 2023. This is the third consultative session out of four which are planned to be held in all provinces of Pakistan. The report will be presented at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. The conference was attended by sectors of the political sphere, media, civil society, and academia.

Nilofar Bakhtiar, Chairperson of NCSW, in her opening address stated that the digital divide has further deteriorated the gender disparity in the country. “The policymakers, leaders and relevant  stakeholders, need to understand the importance of having women at the forefront viz a viz technology.”

Habiba Hassan, Gulalai Khan, Sabahat Bukhari, board member NCSW, LUMS faculty, and Jazz respectively spoke on the risks that automatically arise with the increase in technology in society, namely the risks and dangers for women as well as the increasing digital divide in the nation. Seema Kamil, the first female Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan spoke on the nuances of culture and the digital sphere. “A threat assessment training is crucial for those using it,” she said.

Mubashir Akram, writing the official report, gave a presentation on Women in the Era of Digitalization to set the context for group discussions.

The participants then broke out into the first working session wherein different themes were discussed and the final outcome was then presented by respective groups.

During the closing session, Mr. Adil Farhat, CEO Procter & Gamble, joined the event and spoke on the role of P&G to increase gender inclusivity. Mr. Asif Ikram, Secretary Information and Technology Department Sindh also participated in the session in which he spoke about the precedent set by women throughout history which played a large role in the advancement of society. Ms. Tanzeela Umi Habiba, Special Assistant to the Chief Minister Sindh for Information & Technology closed the event.


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