Girls ‘take over’ Telenor Group’s Executive Management meeting

(Fornebu/Yangon/Dhaka, 26 October 2020) Three young female voices highlight vital role of technology sector in championing gender equality to Telenor Group’s top executives

Published: 26 October 2020 13:50

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Three young women from Telenor Group’s markets of Norway, Bangladesh and Myanmar today presented their first-person perspectives on the representation of women in the technology sector to Telenor’s top executive management.

During their take-over of Telenor Group’s Executive Management meeting, Oda Ertzei (Norway), Reneka Ahmed Antu (Bangladesh) and Shoon Lae Yi Phyo (Myanmar) highlighted some of the common gender-specific barriers that exist in their countries and regions.

Inspiring presentations

Inspired by the presentations, President and CEO of Telenor Group, Sigve Brekke, committed to connect each girl to the CEO of Telenor’s telco in their country with whom they could share their local insights.


“At Telenor, we strive to develop services that work for everybody”, Brekke commented. “To succeed with that, we need a range of perspectives and insights among our own people. This morning, I had the pleasure of speaking to three young girls to gain their perspectives on technology in their countries and globally. Lots of positive energy, but also clear evidence that we still have work to do to remove the hurdles that keep great talent from wanting to join our industry.”

Hungry for change

Ambitious to effect change and challenge gender discrimination across all industries, the young women, representing Norway, Bangladesh and Myanmar, each presented their perspectives on the question of gender diversity, as well as solutions to some of the endemic issues limiting access to opportunities for women and girls.

Their presentations highlighted both opportunities and impediments facing women in the technology space, both in their own countries as well as globally.

Digital skills gap

As laid out by the GSMA’s Mobile Gender Gap Report 2020, women remain on the wrong side of the digital skills gap. Statistics presented in the report show that women are 8 percent less likely to own a mobile phone than men, and that 300 million fewer women have access to internet via their mobile than their male counterparts. The issue persists in the workplace too, as stated in The World Economic Gender Gap Report 2020 which shows that the numbers of female professionals in engineering and data stands at just 15 percent and 26 percent respectively.

Commenting on the take-over, Telenor Group Chief People Officer, Cecilie Heuch, noted that, “Representation of women in technology, and how technology includes women, needs to be high on everyone’s agenda. I think the take-over is a great symbol of the power of these young women’s ideas, ambitions and potential. Today shows Telenor’s continued commitment to promoting diversity and inclusion at all levels of the organisation.”

Inspired by the presentations, Sigve Brekke committed to connect each girl to the CEO of Telenor’s telco in their country with whom they could share their local insights.

Part of a global partnership

The take-over was arranged in collaboration with Plan International, Telenor’s global sustainability partner.

In 2018, Telenor Group and Plan International entered into a global partnership to collaborate on a range of digital and mobile technology solutions that will help advance the rights of children and young people, with a special focus on equality for girls. All joint projects will focus on building skills for a digital future and bridging the digital gender gap – giving girls the necessary access, skills and opportunities to take part in the creation of technology.