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HomeEventsEmpowerFest 2024 celebrates women’s leadership in Viksit, Gatisheel, Atmanirbhar Bharat

EmpowerFest 2024 celebrates women’s leadership in Viksit, Gatisheel, Atmanirbhar Bharat

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With the aim to promote and celebrate women leadership, Tech Observer Magazine with Deloitte as Knowledge Partner organised the EmpowerFest 2024, on May 3rd in New Delhi.

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With the aim to promote and celebrate women leadership, Tech Observer Magazine with as Knowledge Partner organised the , on May 3rd in New Delhi. Themed “Celebrating Women's Leadership in Viksit Gatisheel Atmanirbhar Bharat”, the event was a showcase of determination and inspiration, emphasising women's pivotal roles in India's advancement towards self-reliance.

Unveiling the Vision

The event kicked off with a warm welcome by Mohd Ujaley, Editor of Tech Observer Magazine, followed by an inspiring inaugural note from Deepti Sagar, Partner and Chief Talent and Experience Officer at Deloitte South Asia. Highlight speeches from Dr. Dinesh Tyagi, Former CEO & MD, Common Service Centre and Dr. Omkar Rai, Executive Chairman, Startup Odisha set a motivated tone, while Justice B.N. Srikrishna's keynote deeply resonated, underscoring the fundamental importance of nurturing women leaders.

Dialogue and Discussions

A series of panel discussions took center stage, delving into critical areas like Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI), and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) principles.

Integrating DEI and ESG Principles

The first panel, moderated by Viral Thakker of Deloitte South Asia, featured Dr. Neena Pahuja of the Ministry of Skill Development, Lily Prasad from the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, and Lt Cdr Payal Gupta, NM (Retd), Indian Navy. They discussed how embedding DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) and ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) principles in organisations not only drives sustainable growth but also ensures inclusive leadership. Dr. Pahuja highlighted initiatives that enhance skill development with an inclusive approach, while Lily Prasad addressed the importance of safety and standards from a leadership perspective that prioritises societal welfare.

The First Panel, Moderated By Viral Thakker Of Deloitte South Asia, Featured Dr. Neena Pahuja Of The Ministry Of Skill Development, Lily Prasad From The Food Safety And Standards Authority Of India, And Lt Cdr Payal Gupta, Nm (Retd), Indian Navy.
The first panel, moderated by Viral Thakker of Deloitte South Asia, featured Dr. Neena Pahuja of the Ministry of Skill Development, Lily Prasad from the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, and Lt Cdr Payal Gupta, NM (Retd), Indian Navy.

Women CIOs at the Forefront

This panel, led by Payal Agarwal from Deloitte India, focused on the key role of Women CIOs in guiding India towards an -driven future. Deepa Kaul of Sopra Steria India shared her experiences in integrating AI technologies to enhance operational efficiencies. Rishu Sharma discussed the transformative power of digital technologies in traditional industries. Kirti Kama from Mastercard and Koyelia Ghosh Roy of EXL Service spoke on leveraging AI for financial services and business intelligence, respectively, highlighting the emerging opportunities for women in technology.

This Cio, Led By Payal Agarwal From Deloitte India, Focused On The Key Role Of Women Cios In Guiding India Towards An Ai-Driven Future.
This CIO, led by Payal Agarwal from Deloitte India, focused on the key role of Women CIOs in guiding India towards an AI-driven future.

Building Inclusive Work Cultures

Moderated by Japneet Kaur of Deloitte India, this discussion featured insights from Firdos Khan of the Delhi Commission for Women, Sweta Bhattacharjee from NSDC, and Wg Cdr Meenakshi Shrivastava from the Indian Air Force. The panelists emphasised the strategic importance of capacity building, skill development, and mentoring to create inclusive work environments. Major Vashita Mehra and Adishri Charla shared their perspectives on and automation, respectively, underscoring the role of leadership in fostering inclusive growth.

Moderated By Japneet Kaur Of Deloitte India, This Chro Panel Mphasised The Strategic Importance Of Capacity Building, Skill Development, And Mentoring To Create Inclusive Work Environments.
Moderated by Japneet Kaur of Deloitte India, this CHRO panel mphasised the strategic importance of capacity building, skill development, and mentoring to create inclusive work environments. (Photo/TechObserver)

Women CISOs: Championing Cyber Resilience

Chaired by Deepa Seshadri of Deloitte India, this panel included Dr. Charru Malhotra of the Indian Institute of Public Administration, who discussed the integration of ICT in governance. Dr. Chitij Chauhan from Allbound Inc. highlighted global cybersecurity challenges and the role of women in addressing these issues. Vidya Prabhu, a leader at Kyndryl Solutions, shared her experiences in driving technology transformations and fostering a culture of inclusion within the tech industry.

Chaired By Deepa Seshadri Of Deloitte India, This Panel Included Dr. Charru Malhotra Of The Iipa, Dr. Chitij Chauhan From Allbound Inc And Vidya Prabhu, Associate Director At Kyndryl Solutions. (Photo/Techobserver)
Chaired by Deepa Seshadri of Deloitte India, this panel included Dr. Charru Malhotra of the IIPA, Dr. Chitij Chauhan from Allbound Inc and Vidya Prabhu, Associate Director at Kyndryl Solutions. (Photo/TechObserver)

The New Vanguard – Tech-Savvy Leaders Shaping the Future

A special highlight of EmpowerFest 2024 was the fireside chat titled “The New Vanguard: Tech-Savvy Leaders Shaping the Future of Project Management and Governance with Technology,” moderated by Dr. Nikhil Agarwal, CEO of SIIC and FIRST & AIIDE at IIT Kanpur. This session provided a platform for engaging discussion on the integration of technology in project management and governance, spotlighting innovative practices that can drive effective change.

Anjani K. Jajodia, Vice President of Project Management at the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), shared his experiences in deploying digital solutions to streamline commerce operations and enhance the efficacy of project deliveries. He emphasised the role of digital platforms in facilitating seamless interactions across diverse commerce sectors, thereby fostering a more inclusive economic environment.

Jenny John, Principal Project Engineer (Strategy & Governance Cloud Technology) at the Centre For Railway Information Systems (CRIS), discussed the critical role of cloud technology in transforming government operations. Her talk highlighted the strategic implementation of cloud solutions to improve data governance and project transparency, which are essential for effective public service delivery.

This fireside chat not only provided insights into the challenges and successes of modern project management but also highlighted the impact of visionary women leaders who are at the forefront of technology and governance, paving the way for innovative and sustainable solutions in their fields.

Fireside Chat Titled &Quot;The New Vanguard: Tech-Savvy Leaders Shaping The Future Of Project Management And Governance With Technology,&Quot; Moderated By Dr. Nikhil Agarwal, Ceo Of Siic And First &Amp; Aiide At Iit Kanpur. (Photo/Techobserver)
Fireside chat titled “The New Vanguard: Tech-Savvy Leaders Shaping the Future of Project Management and Governance with Technology,” moderated by Dr. Nikhil Agarwal, CEO of SIIC and FIRST & AIIDE at IIT Kanpur. (Photo/TechObserver)

With these detailed sessions and engaging discussions, EmpowerFest 2024 served as a platform for thought leadership, fostering a dialogue on the empowerment of women and the integration of technology in leadership and governance, making significant strides towards a more inclusive and tech-empowered future.

Samarthya Samman Felicitation

The event also featured the Samarthya Samman Felicitation, celebrating women who have made significant contributions to their fields. This segment was marked by inspirational speeches from leaders like DG STPI Arvind Kumar who discussed the ongoing efforts and future initiatives aimed at empowering women across various sectors. More than 15 women leaders from across the country were felicitated with Samarthya Samma by Justice B. N. Srikrishna, Arvind Kumar, Madhumita Mohapatra, Partner, Deloitte India and Tech Observer Magazine editor Mohd Ujaley.

More Than 15 Women Leaders From Across The Country Were Felicitated With Samarthya Samma During The Empowerfest 2024. (Photo/Techobserver)
More than 15 women leaders from across the country were felicitated with Samarthya Samma during the EmpowerFest 2024. (Photo/TechObserver)

Valued partners who have played a major role in making EmpowerFest 2024 a grand success

Knowledge Partner – Deloitte India Deloitte India served as the Knowledge Partner for EmpowerFest 2024, offering invaluable insights into DEI and ESG practices, women's leadership, and corporate governance. Their contribution was crucial in shaping the intellectual framework and content of the event, ensuring that discussions were both relevant and forward-thinking.

State Partner – Tourism and Culture Department, Government of Uttar Pradesh As the State Partner, the Tourism and Culture Department of Uttar Pradesh helped showcase the region's rich cultural heritage and supported the event's initiatives to promote local tourism and cultural integration. Their partnership highlighted the state's commitment to empowering local communities and enhancing cultural experiences.

Empowerment Partner – Startup Odisha Startup Odisha, as the Empowerment Partner, brought to the fore their initiatives in fostering entrepreneurship and innovation, particularly among women in Odisha. Their efforts in creating a supportive ecosystem for startups were aligned perfectly with the event's theme of promoting women's leadership in new ventures and tech startups.

Skilling Partner – National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) NSDC's role as the Skilling Partner was pivotal in addressing the crucial aspect of skills development for economic empowerment. They brought expertise and resources to the discussions on building inclusive work cultures through strategic skills enhancement and professional training, particularly for women.

EmpowerHer Partner – Go Glossier Go Glossier, the Empower Her Partner, underscored the importance of supporting women's ventures in the beauty and wellness sectors. Their involvement highlighted how brands can actively participate in women's economic empowerment by providing platforms and opportunities for female entrepreneurs to thrive.

Supporting Partner – Artificial Intelligence and Innovation Driven Entrepreneurship Center of Excellence of IIT Kanpur The Artificial Intelligence and Innovation Driven Entrepreneurship (AIIDE) Center of Excellence at IIT Kanpur, as a Supporting Partner, enriched the event with cutting-edge discussions on AI, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Their focus on leveraging technology for societal benefits resonated with the event's focus on tech-driven future governance and project management.

Each of these partners contributed uniquely to the fabric of EmpowerFest 2024, ensuring its success and impact in advocating for women's leadership and empowerment across various sectors in India. Their continued support and collaboration are vital in driving forward the agenda of inclusivity and innovation.

A Day of Empowerment

EmpowerFest 2024 was not just a conference but a catalyst for change, sparking dialogue on crucial issues and celebrating the achievements of women leaders who are steering India towards a brighter, more inclusive future. The discussions underscored the necessity of women's active participation in leadership roles and the collective effort required to build a supportive ecosystem for the next generation of women leaders.

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Sanjay Singh
Sanjay Singh
Sanjay Singh covers startups, consumer electronics and telecom for TechObserver.in
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