Advancing Women’s Participation in the Technology Sector – A Project for Cambodia

As 2020 marks the 70th year of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cambodian governments, the U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh set forth an agenda to spotlight a different thematic area of U.S. work and contributions to Cambodia for each month of the year. The February theme of Youth, Education and Technology was celebrated through the exchange of eight Cambodian tech entrepreneurs, government officials, businesswomen and innovators on a Meridian-administered International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) project.

Participants sought to gain insights into how institutional arrangements connect universities, businesses, and government agencies; to examine best practices for transferring scientific breakthroughs to national and global markets; to encourage the education of girls in STEM fields, and to equip women to become active participants in the Cambodian technology landscape.  Beginning their project in Washington, DC, participants met with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to discuss the protection of intellectual property and means of commercialization.

The participants subsequently traveled to Denver, CO and Portland, OR to examine education and mentorship programs for girls in STEM, as well as women-led startups and public-private partnerships. A highlight for the group in Portland included a visit to the OTRADI Bioscience Incubator, a complex that provides startups and scientists with access to entrepreneurial mentoring and state-of-the-art bioscience facilities. On the last day of the program, the group traveled down the Oregon coast to the Oregon State University (OSU) campus in Corvallis. There, the group explored the OSU Advantage Accelerator, a prime example of a public-private partnership, to learn how a university can work in partnership with local businesses to benefit the regional economy.


Sponsors and Partnerships

U.S. Department of State
International Visitor Leadership Program, U.S. Department of State

Project summary

Advancing Women’s Participation in the Technology Sector – A Project for Cambodia | March 2020
Number of Visitors: 8
Regions: East Asia and Pacific
Countries: Cambodia
Impact Areas: Empowering Women and Girls, Science and Technology
Program Areas: Global Leadership