Women in the Pacific islands have been marginalised for a long time. But like many other communities, they are also venturing into the STEM industry. This has shed light on the climate crisis and food security in the Pacific region. Ocean scientist Dr Katy Soapi from the Solomon Islands and Hydraulic engineer Atrienne Roberts from Vanuatu are two such women. Both of them found difficulty due to a lack of mentors. Computer scientist Priscilla Kevin founded a network in Papua New Guinea in 2014 for women in STEM.
Esports (electronic sports) is a form of competition using video games. In the past two decades, these games have seen the rise of professional players. But, even esports is not immune to the gender gap. 42% of the gamers who watch esports are female but all of eight players competing in this year's The Valorant Champions Tour are men. Of the 300 highest-earning e-sports players, not one is a woman. Despite physical strength not being a factor, it is not understood why so few women make it to the top in esports.
Feminism is still a complex subject in India. There are polar opposite opinions, and it has pushed even feminists to radical choices. Sindhu Rajasekaran's new book 'Smashing the Patriarchy: A Guide for the 21st Century Indian Woman' points them out. She sheds light on how feminist women are forced to stand with all women despite disagreements. The stereotypes around hijab, glamorous models, and housewives are also discussed in the book. It is helpful in understanding the concepts of liberty, equality, and sorority.
Swagatika Das went to IIT Kharagpur to study Metallurgical and Materials Engineering with the goal of working in the core oil and gas industry. After about five years, she switched careers and joined Apple's sales department. Soon, she embraced her real interest and co-founded the skincare brand Nat Habit. She stuck to natural ingredients to make ubtans, face packs, Henna paste, hair oils, and cleansing balms. The company has grown 25 times in the last year and now ships 1,50,000 units per month.
Tanushree Singh is one of the few Indian ceramists that has elevated the craft to an art form. She runs a studio Lacuna in Goa and makes body-positive mugs and planters. Considering where she lives, some of her designs are inspired by sea creatures as well. She tried to convey the essence of slow and mindful living through her art. Every piece is handcrafted and made in small batches. She used to be a corporate employee and took a sabbatical in 2018. It became a turning point because she gave pottery for fun.
SalesKen is a sales conversion AI startup that recently raised $22 million in a Series B round of funding, led by M12, Microsoft’s Venture Fund. Co-founder and CEO, Surga Thilakan says SalesKen has grown 300% in revenue in the last 18 months. It also launched North American operations and has customers in Edtech, Banking, Financial Services, Construction, and Logistics. She says the Covid pandemic expanded remote selling modes to other more traditional industries that were previously selling through outside sales.