Yet, women continue to face structural difficulties that prevent them from achieving their full potential.
Huawei has created the Women's Academy for Rural Innovation, a university in which highly talented women from 15 European rural areas come together to acquire the necessary skills and tools to live in the digital age from the very rural areas in which they live.
Every year, on October 15, Europe and the world commemorate Rural Women's Day. Huawei introduces the first Women's Academy for Rural Innovation in Europe to Castilla y León, the largest region in Spain and Europe.
Berta Herrero, Director of Huawei Europe's Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion and Director of the Academy, underscores that women are vital to achieving an inclusive, strong digital transition. However, in rural areas, they also need to overcome the urban-rural divide, which has been a major obstacle to equal opportunities throughout the European Union in recent years. This unique and innovative program aims to enable talented women from rural Europe to acquire the necessary skills to shape digital transformation from the beauty of their own villages.
Huawei's main representative before the EU institutions, Tony Jin Young, states that: "Huawei has been in Europe for 22 years. It is a valuable partner in the green and digital transitions. In 2021, Huawei was ranked second in the EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard. We pay special attention to rural areas because of this."
The 15 participants (each from a different EU Member State) will be selected by an independent jury and will receive a full scholarship to participate in the program. Applicants must be in good standing, live in a rural area, and wish to make a positive impact and exploit new technologies to stimulate economic development locally.
This program will focus on entrepreneurship and the application of new technologies in rural areas. It will also cover the digitization of SMEs and the necessary steps to ensure the sustainability of firms, while examining the immense potential that innovation offers to rural areas, especially those at risk of depopulation.
This edition of the 2022 Women's Academy for Rural Innovation will take place between October 23 and 28 in different locations in Castilla y León, including the Parador de Gredos and Candeleda. Applications are open until September 27 and you may apply from here.