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Article Series: Mums in Tech

It is a common fact that gender equality is still a big issue around Europe and it has become even worse due to COVID-19.

One of the struggles women face is how to build a career and at the same time start a family. The parental leave regulation looks very different from one european country to another, but it can be seen, in some of the most gender equal countries in europe (such as Sweden or Denmark), also the regulation of a shared, paid and supportive parental leave gives women better opportunity to become leaders and proceed a career as an entrepreneur. Unsupportive regulation leaves the women at a cross-road where she has to choose between a well-paid high-end position or being home with her family – most often the family naturally wins.

But some improvements are about to happen across the european union. In August 2019, a new work life balance directive went into force giving the european member states 3 years to implement and adopt new laws, regulation and administrative provisions that aim to better support a work-life balance for parents and carers, encourage a more equal sharing of parental leave between men and women, and addressing women’s underrepresentation in the labour market. The directive includes for example AN INTRODUCTION (About time…) of paternity leave where fathers MUST be able to take at least 10 working days of paternity leave around the time of birth of their child, compensated at least at the level of sick pay. It also ensures that two out of the four months of parental leave are non-transferable between parents and compensated at a level that is determined by the Member State (does that mean anything between 0-100 % ?). It also expands the right to request flexible working arrangements to working parents of children up to eight years old.

[email protected] will share with you the thoughts of several mums who work in STEM/tech in a series called “Mums in tech”. We will get a peak of their insights, feelings and ideas of improvements when it comes to women who want to have a career and also start a family.

Interview with Monika Paule

"You can be who ever you aspire. Just trust yourself and you will manage to achieve everything you want in life. Take ”water” as a symbol and imagine how you can move through life and find the right shape to that perticular situation. Either you can live forceful as a...

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Interview with Liwah Wong 

Our second mum of our “Mums in tech”-serie is Liwah Wong. She is living and working as a climate scientist for the mercator research institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) in Germany. She is working on circular economy and is related to both Climate KIC...

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Interview with Janina Fagerlund 

The first woman of our “Mums in tech” series is a Janina Fagerlund, who studied at EIT Digital until 2014. She works as “Head of product” at Reaktor in Helsinki, Finland and has a one year old little girl Naomi currently staying at home with her dad. “The parenthood...

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Issue #1 October 2020: Access it here.

Issue #2 November 2020: Access it here.

Issue #3 December 2020: Access it here.

Issue #4 January 2021: Access it here.

Issue #5 February 2021: Access it here.

Issue #6 May 2021: Access it here.

[email protected] is a community which aims to activate the power of women in European innovation and entrepreneurship. Our members are people affiliated with all the EIT communities who want to network, learn from, and exchange with likeminded people. Together we support the shift towards a more gender-equal European ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship.

About the EIT

The European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) is an independent body of the European Union set up in 2008 to deliver innovation across Europe. The EIT brings together leading business, education and research organisations to form dynamic cross-border partnerships. These are called Innovation Communities and each is dedicated to finding solutions to a specific global challenge. EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities develop innovative products and services, start new companies, and train a new generation of entrepreneurs. Together, we power innovators and entrepreneurs across Europe to turn their best ideas into products, services, jobs and growth. Read more