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Women in digital manufacturing: discussion panel and networking reception

Published on November 18th 2022

Although women represent almost half of the labour force in the United Kingdom, they account for only 26% of all workers in the manufacturing sector.  Gender norms and stereotypes still segregate women and men into different occupations and economic activities. Women are also underrepresented in leadership positions and this lack of diversity influences decision making and firm performance.

Digital technologies have the potential to contribute to narrowing gender inequalities but gender norms often hinder women from taking full advantage of these technologies.  Women are less likely to participate in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields; they are also less likely to own a business; and their start-ups receive less funding. The exclusion of women in the design and deployment of digital technologies also risks deepening gender gaps and reinforcing gender norms.

To raise awareness of gender inequalities in digital manufacturing, a discussion panel and networking reception, funded by InterAct, will take place on Wednesday 16th November during Digital Manufacturing Week 2022.

Attendees to the discussion panel and the networking reception will be invited to contribute their thoughts and opinions on the barriers and opportunities for women in digital manufacturing. The results will be summarised and disseminated in a policy brief.

Tickets are free for manufacturers and can be booked via: https://bit.ly/ifm-sfe

Women in Manufacturing initiative

This project is part of a broader Women in Manufacturing initiative, a network of academics, practitioners and professionals working in the field of manufacturing with a shared interest in raising the profile of women in manufacturing.

If this might be of of interest to you and your organisation, please answer this short questionnaire.

Women in digital manufacturing panel

Made Smarter Theatre, Digital Manufacturing Week, Liverpool
Wednesday 16 November, 15:45 – 16:30


  • Katy Davies, Camden Boss
  • Nicole Ballantyne, MESTEC
  • Nipuni Karunaratne, Ivy Tech and Rolls Royce


  • Jennifer Castañeda-Navarrete, Policy Links, IfM Engage
  • Jill MacBryde, University of Strathclyde and InterActHub

Networking reception

Institute for Manufacturing (IfM) stand (F36), Digital Manufacturing Week, Liverpool
Wednesday 16 November, 16:30 – 17:30 hrs

This event is funded by the InterAct Early Career Researcher Fellowship Programme. InterAct is a Made Smarter Innovation funded, Economic and Social Research Council-led network that aims to bring together economic and social scientists, UK manufacturers, and digital technology providers to address the human issues resulting from the diffusion of new technologies in industry.

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