MDEC reveals all-women team for its newly formed department

(From left) Nur Afiqah, Quratul Ain, Nasya Azureen, Nabilah, and Farah Nabillah.

In celebration of International Women’s Day, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) announced an all-women team for the newly-formed Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (AI) department.

The appointment of the team members is in continuation with the Digital for Malaysia Associate Programme (DMAP) which provides opportunities for new graduates to gain digital work experience in the fields of digital technology, data science and AI.

According to a statement by MDEC, the five women graduates who make up the team are Nabilah Mohd Akhir who holds a Masters Degree holder in Data Science from Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM), Quratul Ain Aadnan Masters Degree in Data Science from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), Farah Nabillah Mohamed Jizad who holds a Masters Degree in Data Science (UiTM), Nasya Azureen Sailor who graduated with a degree in Cognitive Science from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS) and Nur Afiqah Hashim, a Data Engineering graduate from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM).

CEO of MDEC, Surina Shukri said she believes education and engagement are two pillars of a strong female technology workforce and currently in Malaysia, women make up 35% of the technology workforce. 

“Promoting women leadership in technology is also essential,” she added. ”Being a woman in a non-traditional leadership role myself, I understand the challenges that we face but we are pleased of the advancement that we continue to make at MDEC in bridging the gender divide and it reflects our commitment to ensure a shared prosperity for all in line with the visions of the Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint (MyDIGITAL).”

Based on the AI Readiness Index by the International Research Development Centre (IDRC) and Oxford Insights released last year, Malaysia is ranked 28th with a score of 63.66 involving the readiness to use data science and AI for healthcare, education and transportation sectors and is ahead of Brunei (49th), Thailand (60th), Indonesia (62nd), Philippines (74th) and Vietnam at (76th) position. 

“The participation of new talents, including from among graduates with digital and data science skillsets, will definitely contribute towards this agency in making the digital leap,” said MDEC Chairman, YBhg. Datuk Wira Dr Hj Rais Hussin Mohamed Ariff. “It is also in line with the second component of Malaysia 5.0 which is to adopt, add value and produce digital and technological transformation in the era of Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0).” 

One of the graduates, Nabilah Mohd Akhir said she is excited to join the Data Science and AI division at MDEC as it is a great opportunity for her to gain experience in the digital technology sector which currently plays an important role in the country’s economic growth.

“MDEC has various initiatives to drive the growth of the country’s digital economy and I am confident that the knowledge obtained at the university can be applied here in the various fields such as creative digital content, business digitization, financial technology and digital investment,” Nabilah said. “This is because scientific data will lead to the management and creation of smart technology in line with the progress of the IR4.0 era.”

The digital economy is expected to continue its significant contribution to the country this year, based on an estimated 20 percent contribution to the GDP in 2020 by the Department of Statistics Malaysia, following a forecast of 6.7 percent economic growth for 2021 by the World Bank.

According to the statement by MDEC, with the launch of MyDIGITAL, the expected contributions – by 2025 – from the digital economy towards the GDP is an estimated 22.6 percent.

In conjunction with International Women’s Day (IWD) happening on 8 March, MARKETING Magazine is declaring the whole month of March as a celebration of Malaysian women in the industry and brand campaigns that aim to empower women and start a discussion on existing gender inequality.

Our biggest campaign for IWD 2021 is the 5-part content series, Challenge Accepted.

Throughout March, every Monday, we will be featuring one successful, inspiring and powerful woman who has accepted the challenge to be great at what she does. We’ve sat with each one of them and asked them about the mindset and determination they’ve built to be where they are today.  

The official theme for IWD 2021 is #ChooseToChallenge and through these stories, we’re excited for our readers to be inspired to challenge themselves and the norms around them and create something they’re proud of.

The first part of our series features Founder and CEO of idotyou, Dorothy Fong who started the creative agency 20 years ago.

Remaining a lean and small team, idotyou has executed some of the most memorable campaigns for big brands since and continues to do so and we found that Dorothy’s leadership skills and entrepreneurial mindset has played a pivotal role in ensuring the success of idotyou in the highly competitive marketing and advertising market.

Read more here.

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