IEEE Women in Engineering (WIE) Kolkata Section successfully organized the WIE Track on June 09, 2019, at Biswa Bangla Convention Center, Kolkata, under the prestigious IEEE Region 10 Symposium, TENSYMP 2019. A Panel Discussion on “Are women still suffering from visibility problem at workplace?” was organized under this track which is supposed to be the one of the most emerging topics related to the women professionals. Approximately hundred attendees were present in this event. The Track started at 11:00 am with the Inaugural Session. In this session, WIE Kolkata Section Chair, Prof. Sudipta Chatterjee, briefly introduced the IEEE Kolkata Section and its Affinity Group Women in Engineering (WIE) to the audience. She mainly emphasized on the intake, retention and visibility of women engineers. IEEE Region 10 WIE Coordinator, Ms. Emi Yano through her video message highlighted on the need for putting in cumulative effort of male and female engineers for a better world.

The Panel consisted of eminent professionals from the various fields-Mrs. Antara Acharya IAS, CEO, KMDA with additional charges of CEO, Sector – VI ITA and Project Director, WBSPMG, Mrs. Neeloo Sherpa (Chakraborty) IPS, Joint Commissioner of Police (Organisation), Kolkata Police (could not be present due to some emergency), Dr. Amit Chaudhuri, Group Head, ICT & Services, CDAC, Kolkata, Dr. Gargi B. Dasgupta, Director, IBM Research India, CTO, IBM India and South Asia, Bangalore and Mrs. Sudeshna Mukhopadhyay, Chief Design Officer, IBahn Illumination Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi. The Panel Discussion was efficiently moderated by Dr. Gargi Chatterjea, Executive Director, Regulatory Affairs and Corporate Services, CESC Ltd., Kolkata.

Mrs. Antara Acharya expressed that it is the competency of a woman professional which enhances her visibility in the profession. Although at grassroot level, this visibility issue is not dominant, at the top level, visibility of women could be improved further by improvising proper support system for domestic work. Dr. Amit Chaudhuri was in agreement with this. He also added that although in ICT services the scenario is not that alarming, a woman friendly environment in the society could make this situation better. Dr. Gargi B. Dasgupta suggested to resolve the conflict between the professional role and the role of a woman simply by prioritizing the situation as it comes. In this context, help from male colleagues in proper time can act as a boon. Mrs. Sudeshna Mukhopadhyay strongly placed her view that visibility problem does exist in production or process industry. The dedication, passion of accepting challenges in profession, and mobility make a woman more visible in workplace. Dr. Gargi Chatterjea nicely conducted and summarized the views of all speakers. The interactive session between audience and the speakers added an additional dimension to this event. The event was ended at 1:00 pm with the vote of thanks delivered by Dr. Bratati Mukhopadhyay, Vice Chair, WIE Kolkata Section. The event was conducted by Dr. Ankita Pramanik, Secretary, WIE Kolkata Section.

Overall, the Panel Discussion was highly beneficial to the participants. The expert opinion from the eminent speakers could highly motivate every individual present there. WIE Kolkata Section likes to acknowledge IEEE Region 10 WIE for its financial support for organizing this event. Special acknowledgement to IEEE Kolkata Section for providing refreshment to the participants.

Sudipta Chatterjee, IEEE Kolkata Section WIE Chair