Mon. Jul 15th, 2024
Brussels, 17 May 2023

A delegation of the European Parliament’s Women’s Rights and Gender Equality Committee visited Greater Copenhagen from 15 to 17 May focusing on women’s entrepreneurship.

The visit followed on from the European Parliament’s 2022 report on women’s economic independence and female entrepreneurship.

With the support of the EU Social Fund, the Danish Entrepreneurs’ Association has provided training to 1100 Ukrainian women, enabling them to start businesses. The delegation, led by Karen Melchior (Renew, Denmark), and which included Monika Vana (Greens/EFA, Austria) and Margarita De La Pisa Carrión (ECR, Spain), started with a meeting with Ukrainian women entrepreneurs in Denmark.

Female founders and investors was the topic when meeting the Female Founder’s House and Female Invest. Female Invest highlighted the gender investment gap both for women as founders and investors. Mia Wagner, the CEO of Nordic Female Founders, highlighted the need to create a welcoming and inspiring ecosystem for women entrepreneurs, which creates a dedicated space where women’s skills or abilities are not prejudged. When hearing the experiences and perspectives of women entrepreneurs and CEOs, it became clear to the delegation that many of the conditions to receive funding can become significant barriers when the CEO has children and requires parental leave.

The appetite for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), innovation and entrepreneurship can easily be stifled in young girls. The delegation met with Sofie Osmani, the Mayor of the Lyngby-Taarbæk to discuss how local policies can successfully link companies and schools to inspire girls in pursuing STEM education. The delegation visit to the Innovation Hub (Skylab) at the Technical University of Denmark provided insights into creating a supportive environment for women to continue their ambitions in STEM fields.

Women’s bodies and how they are seen by society can affect many women’s self-confidence and may hinder them in realising their full potential. The delegation discussed this with artist Marie Hald while visiting her exhibition “Exposed” at the Frederiksborg Museum.

Quote

Karen Melchior (Renew, Denmark), who led the delegation, said:

“Our meetings in Denmark underlined the need for both a top-down as well as a bottom-up cultural change in favour of women’s entrepreneurship. Political will is needed to set hard targets such as women’s quotas for boards but also in venture capital to improve access to funding, and also to ensure more flexible support and social rights for entrepreneurs.”

Members participating in the delegation were:

Karen Melchior (Renew, Denmark), Head of the delegation

Monika Vana (Greens/EFA, Austria)

Margarita De La Pisa Carrión (ECR, Spain)

Source – EU Parliament

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