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The Chairperson and CEO, eWorldwide Group, Dr Salma Abbasi reveals her views and thoughts about sustainable development at the WSIS 2016 Platform, Geneva, Switzerland

Dr Salma Abbasi reveals her views and thoughts about sustainable development at the WSIS 2016 Platform, Geneva, Switzerland

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The Chairperson and CEO, eWorldwide Group, Dr Salma Abbasi presented a Policy Statement at the High-Level Policy Session, UN ITU WSIS Summit in Geneva, Switzerland, 4th May 2016

In her statement she emphasized that ‘greater care is needed to ensure inclusion of the elderly and people with special needs in the ever expanding ...

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The eWorldwide group is organizing a thematic workshop on 'Acceleration of Girls Education and Rights to Ensure Sustainable Gender Empowerment through ICTs' at WSIS Forum, Geneva, Switzerland on 5th May 2016 at 3.00 pm to 4.30 pm

Description of the Session:

Knowledge, information and critical thinking are the basic foundations to enabl ...

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Chairperson Profile

A technologist and philanthropist, proven to be a visionary leader with dynamic drive and positive energy, Dr. Salma Abbasi motivates both, professionals and civil society. She has nearly 30 years’ experience in the field of technology and business process reengineering.
UK born graduate, BSc. Civil Engineering, from Westminster University, London, she later moved to California where she completed her MSc. in Electrical Engineering. As an active technologist, with a great interest in social development, she continued her studies and has recently completed her doctorate from Royal Holloway, University of London in: ‘Women and ICTs in Muslim Countries: Policies, Practices and Challenges

Dr. Abbasi started her career in 1981 in Silicon Valley as a design engineer for AMD and rapidly progressed holding a series of diverse executive management positions in fortune 500 companies in fields ranging from engineering, manufacturing, quality assurance and reliability, international business development and customer satisfaction. This rich experience has given her unique capabilities, knowledge and understanding to think outside the box in multiple cultures, challenging situations and in times of crisis. This led Dr. Abbasi to form the e Worldwide Group in 2001, a dynamic consortium of 37 companies, universities and organisations, providing multiple services and solutions focused in two primary areas: sustainable development and security.

As Chairperson of the e Worldwide Group, Dr. Abbasi is using her vast international experience and knowledge, along with her contacts to leverage best practices to develop unique multi-sector multi-stakeholder partnerships. She has successfully created strategies and initiatives that integrate policies and promote innovation to focus on ‘win-win’ scenarios, thus laying the foundations for sustainable knowledge economies. Dr. Abbasi advocates that the only way to develop a truly resilient knowledge economy is to engage local SMEs, preparing them with holistic capabilities to promote entrepreneurship. This has directly benefited local economies resulting in sustainable socio-economic development, harmonised within local context. Furthermore using information communication technology (ICT) she has bridged the digital and gender divide in a practical and culturally sensitive manner.

Dr. Abbasi has been a member of various UN agencies over the past 10 years and works very closely with Governments across the world, specifically focusing on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), alongside working on multiple elements of safety and security. In 2009, Dr. Abbasi was invited by the WHO to be part of the international organizing committee for the first global forum on medical devices to build a better understanding of the role that technology can play in improving the lives of people with special needs. This resulted in her developing an innovative concept to holistically address the challenges of people with special needs and to ensure their inclusion in society by the creation and implementation of the Assistive Technology

Centre (ATC). Subsequently, in 2010, she also developed a concept to reduce maternal and infant mortality rates by using ICT’s for delivering knowledge and awareness at the grassroots level. This was endorsed by the department of Making Pregnancy Safer, at the WHO. More recently, she has developed a multi-dimensional school health initiative that targets ‘preventing avoidable deaths’ from infectious diseases and non-communicable diseases. This has been endorsed by UNICEF and is currently being implemented in Asia and Africa.

Dr. Abbasi has also been actively working to drive interfaith understanding, dialogue, and awareness to bridge the socio-religious gap and promote human security in multi-cultural societies since the early 80’s. She is also working with Governments and development agencies to promote ‘effective’ community cohesion to prevent extremist violence and radicalization. In 2004 she designed unique models to holistically transform Madaris (Quranic schools) to promote interfaith harmony, understanding and social-economic development for youth. As a result of this work, the following year Dr. Abbasi was invited to be a Senior Associate Fellow in the International Policy department and later in the Conflict, Security and Development department at King’s College University London.

Also as a member of the International Telecommunication Union’s (ITU) High Level Experts Group (HLEG) for Cybersecurity, she is working on defining national level security strategies and policies for cybercrime and security. In this context, Dr. Abbasi authored the concept paper for ‘Child Online Protection’ (COP), focused on protecting children from the dangers of the internet. In June 2008, the ITU’s Secretary General, Dr. Hamadoun Toure, subsequently endorsed and adopted this concept and it is now a global strategic initiative for the ITU and its member nations.

Subsequently, she joined hands with UNESCO in 2010, to help support and drive the ‘power of peace’ initiative. Recognising the impact of the digital society on youth, she founded and championed the creation of an international network of ‘Global Cyber Ambassadors for Peace’ (GCAP). This network engages school children from around the world to embrace the ‘concept of understanding, peace, tolerance and respect’. In March 2010, Dr. Abbasi was awarded the Ibn Khaldun Award for Excellence for promoting understanding between global cultures by the UK Ministry of Communities and Local Government.

Dr. Abbasi has been described as a “visionary leader who executes”. It is her personal goal to make a difference in everything she does by striving to improve the quality of life of marginalised people all over the world. She continues to spread her positive ideas, energy, experience and understanding, by speaking at conferences on multiple platforms ranging from sustainable development, gender empowerment to security and policy review to create a safe space for debate and knowledge creation to support peace, understanding and harmony in the world.