Research in Motion (RIM) unveiled the winners of its third BlackBerry Women & Technology Awards at ceremony in London last night.
However, Charmaine Eggberry, the Awards' creator, and vice president and managing director of RIM in EMEA, expressed concerns that only a quarter of girls have considered a career in technology compared to more than half of boys.
This is despite the fact that nearly 90 per cent of girls aged 11 to 16 believe that using technology is 'cool' and regularly talk to their friends about it, and just over a third chat about the latest technology on a daily basis.
"There is still a lack of understanding about the phenomenal opportunities that a career in, or associated with, technology has to offer," said Eggberry.
"The technology industry needs to work together to highlight the great opportunities that technology jobs can provide.
"It is also important to create and celebrate female role models within the technology industry and give young women who are choosing their career paths access to their inspirational stories."
Over two thirds of girls aged 11 to 16 believe that there is a gap between the playground and the careers centre because the UK lacks smart female role models in the technology industry.
Furthermore, over half think that there should be fewer celebrity role models and more inspirational business role models.
"We have a huge responsibility to promote positive examples of what women can aim to be," said Maggie Philbin, Master of Ceremonies for the Awards, and a former presenter on Tomorrow's World.
"By celebrating talented individuals we not only highlight one person's achievement, we demonstrate to hundreds of women the fantastic opportunities technology can open up."
The winners of the 2008 BlackBerry Women & Technology Awards were as follows:
- Best use of technology by a woman within the corporate sector: Jayne Opperman (Lloyds TSB)
- Best use of technology by under 30 year-old woman: Lisa Ditlefsen (Base One)
- Best woman in technology (public sector and academia): Professor Lizbeth Goodman (SMARTlab)
- Best use of technology within the multimedia industry by a woman: Beatriz Alonso-Martinez (Avid Technology Europe)
- Best company advancing women in technology: BT Group
- Best use of technology by a woman in small to medium business: Polly Gowers (Everyclick.com)
- Best female mentor: Kate Bishop (Dell)
- BlackBerry outstanding woman in technology: Professor Lizbeth Goodman (SMARTlab)
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