A global collaboration between industry partners, NGOs, Ministries of Education, and governments that stresses the importance of public-private partnerships in solving the challenges of the gender gap and the urgency to empower more young women through tech education.
The AI Forward Alliance (TAIFA) will empower a generation of female leaders and innovators to use technology to drive innovation to solve complex global problems.
TAIFA is committed to offering girls worldwide access to the education, skills, and technology essential for success in and influence in a future where AI plays a pivotal role.
Breaking the Cycle:
Ongoing Gender Gaps In Innovation And Tech Are Rooted In Education
A very small percentage of the workforce is made up of high-skill level jobs that have an outsize impact on world progress. For instance, less than half a percent (0.45%) of the workforce is made up of software professionals…and more than 70% of this group is male.
These gender gaps originate in higher education, reflecting the opportunities, information and choices given to young women since middle school, with less than 30% enrolling in ICT studies and 36% in STEM fields.
Despite over a decade of efforts and initiatives to address gender gaps in STEM, they persist—and it’s an urgent problem. This scarcity of talent threatens global growth and development because science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) industries and their adoption of new and frontier technologies are at the center of innovation and economic progress (World Economic Forum,2023).
Revealing the Opportunity:
The Untapped Power of Girls and Women and AI
Bringing more girls and women into science and technology will ensure that not only are the jobs of the future filled, but more importantly we will be able to drive social well-being, inclusive growth and sustainable development. This is because there is irrefutable evidence showing that educating and empowering girls and women positively impacts entire communities and economies; increasing the earning capabilities of women helps eradicate poverty, promotes lifelong learning opportunities, fosters innovation, reduces overall inequalities and helps achieve SDGs 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, and 10.See recent AI projects made by girls
A Partnership for the Goals:
The AI Forward Alliance
The AI Forward Alliance is deeply committed to ensuring that girls and young women around the world have AI proficiency and entrepreneurial mindsets to strengthen and accelerate their countries’ economies and well-being.
The AI Forward Alliance (TAIFA) is committed to providing 25 million girls and young women with the skills, knowledge, access, tools and mentorship to not only understand how AI models work, but to train, develop and deploy their own machine learning models and transformative technologies that tackle real-world problems in their communities.
The collaborative expertise and resources of Technovation and UNICEF form a powerful leadership and partnership driving the alliance. At the core of TAIFA’s strategy, Technovation’s program empowers girls and young women with tech education, an entrepreneurial mindset, and future-ready skills, extending beyond the development of hard skills. The program guides girls in identifying real-world problems, developing solutions, and instills the agency to tackle these pressing challenges. Leveraging UNICEF’s global reach, with access to educators, ministries of education, and girls and women in 144 countries, ensures the wide-reaching impact of the alliance.
A Dynamic Ecosystem Of Partners
TAIFA Goals and Expected Outcomes
- Empower 25 million girls and young women through AI, coding, and entrepreneurship educational programming
- See 6 million of those young women enter the workforce in fields related to technology by 2030
How we’ll do it:
- Giving the center stage to women leaders and innovators to be role models and trailblazers for the next generation.
- High level engagement of the private sector in supporting girls’ and women’s education and empowerment
- Implementing large-scale skilling of girls and women in data science and machine learning
- Galvanizing resource commitments from key industry leaders, philanthropy, foundations and individuals
The AI Forward Alliance Partners
UNICEF builds partnerships across the global community to accelerate gender equality. For adolescent girls especially, UNICEF invests in skills building to further their economic empowerment – as entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders. UNICEF will give TAIFA increased access to educators, ministries of education, and girls and women in 144 countries.
Grameen Foundation invests in the power of women to dismantle the economic and social barriers that stand in their way. Working with them to increase access, profitability, and agency throughout their entrepreneurial journey. Grameen Foundation will expand AI-entrepreneurship training to young women in low-income communities around the world and engage their families in accepting their new skills – thereby driving systemic change in gender-based stereotypes and social norms.
As the developer of one of the world’s largest free open-source platforms to create mobile apps, understand and apply Generative AI, the App Inventor Foundation will support the development of resources and training for TAIFA’s ecosystem educators and facilitators.
With a dynamic community of over 400,000 women in tech, business and entrepreneurship, Girl Geek X will bring its expertise to help grow and strengthen a global community of women tech leaders.
A global, 21st century philanthropy, Patrick J. McGovern Foundation is committed to bridging the frontiers of artificial intelligence, data science, and social impact. The Foundation invests in the exploration, enhancement, and development of AI and data science for good. Patrick J. McGovern Foundation is a TAIFA funding partner.
"If Technovation has been able to do this alone all these years, can you imagine what we can accomplish if we combine our collective resources? We can do much, hence our ambition to empower 25 million Future Shapers. So, all partners, we invite you: come with us."
— Wycliffe Otieno, Senior Advisor, Education, UNICEF HQ
"We anticipate that emerging AI technologies will fuel future solutions and are eager to work with others in the Alliance to ensure girls and young women around the world benefit from them."
— Zubaida Bai, CEO, The Grameen Foundation
"Half of the women who enter the tech industry drop out by age 35, according to Accenture. Girl Geek X is a community of women in tech continuing to grow and inspire each other. As the future of work changes and grows, here women can find a warm and inclusive place to swap career tips, resources, and find their next job in tech."
—Angie Chang, Founder & CEO at Girl Geek X
"The App Inventor Foundation is greatly looking forward to supporting The AI Forward Alliance with an engaging platform and curricula that empower students and educators to apply their understanding of AI and data science by building real-world solutions that uplift their communities."
— Natalie Lao, Executive Director, App Inventor Foundation
"UNICEF is proud to join forces with The AI Forward Alliance to expand educational access to millions of girls and young women. Together, we will continue to foster the development of girls’ crucial critical thinking skills and empowered decision making and supercharge innovation and overall global wellbeing in the years to come.”
— Robert Jenkins, Director of Education and Adolescent Development, Programme Group, UNICEF
Find your place
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Learn more about why educating girls and women is the single most powerful thing we can do to ensure a sustainable future for everyone.
Join us in-person
Join us at an upcoming TAIFA event to learn more about this unique global partnership, our goals, how we want to accomplish them and how you can get involved.
Our next event will be on March 12, 2024 in New York, NY:
A World of AI Driven Tech: Addressing a Global Talent Gap
Join Technovation and UNICEF for a day of conversation and networking that brings together women who have excelled in different areas through tech-driven expertise.
We aim to showcase to girls and women that it is possible, through education, to break the glass ceiling and be champions and leaders of empowerment for other girls.
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