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You are cordially invited... join the 2021 Vienna Discussion Forum hosted by UNODC and UNIDO, together with the Permanent Missions of Finland, Norway and Sweden!

The Vienna Discussion Forum is an annual event to discuss gender equality and the empowerment of women in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals. In 2021, it will take place on November 4th at 2 PM CET in the form of a hybrid conference, on the topic “Cyber Equality and Digital Inclusion”.



Artificial Intelligence, Digital Transformation and the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) are fundamentally changing the way we live, work and interact with each other. Digital environments and new technologies bring many benefits in terms of access and opportunities in people’s everyday lives, allowing to harness these converging technologies in order to create an inclusive, sustainable and gender-equal future.
However, deeply rooted structural and cultural gender inequalities prevent women and girls from having equal access to digital infrastructures, devices and services. Moreover, digital environments and new technologies bring new challenges, where women are being disproportionately targeted by various forms of online abuse, and difficulties remain in the persecution of perpetrators of such crimes.
Against this background, the 2021 Vienna Discussion Forum will focus on the importance of gender-responsive digitalization to ensure that inequalities are not reinforced in the process of technological development and digital transformation. By drawing on the mandates of UNODC and UNIDO, the discussion with experts in the areas (amongst others) of cybercrime, online gender-based violence and young girls engagement in technological developments will identify how these organizations can support gender-inclusive and safe technological change.

Read the outcome document to the 2021 VDF here

The 2021 Vienna Discussion Forum will be opened by a high-level opening panel consisting of:

<h5 style="text-align: center;"><strong>Ghada Fathi Waly</strong></h5>
<div style="text-align: center;">Director-General/Executive Director of UNOV/UNODC</div>
Ghada Fathi Waly
Director-General/Executive Director of UNOV/UNODC
LI Yong
Director General, UNIDO
Maria-Francesca Spatolisano
Officer-in-Charge of the UN Secretary General’s Office of the Envoy on Technology
Karin Strandås
State Secretary for Gender Equality, Sweden

Meet the panel:

H.E. Belen Sapag Muñoz de la Peña

Permanent Representative of the Republic of Chile to the United Nations in Vienna 

 Moderator of the VDF 2021

Lawyer (U.Chile), Master in Foreign Policy and career diplomat with 28 years in the international arena. Graduated from the Executive Leadership Program of the JFK School of Government Harvard University. Multilateral specialist on Security Council. She has served her country in Chile, Argentina, Malaysia and eleven years at the United Nations where she focused on UN reform, WPS, CAAC and disarmament.

Political Coordinator in the Security Council. Member elect of UNIFEM Consultative Committee. Has negotiated and facilitated UN conventions and resolutions, including CRPD, resolution establishing UN Women and Peacekeeping mandates. Member of the NGO Committee, Third Committee and General Assembly Bureau, SC Sanctions Committees. Author and co-author of books on bilateral and multilateral affairs, Invited lecturer at several academic institutions such as UNITAR and IDEA. Professor of administrative law at the Diplomatic Academy.

Marco Kamiya
Chief of the Division of Innovation Strategies and Digitalization

Marco Kamiya is Chief of the Innovation and Digitalization Division at UNIDO, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. The Division works on frontier technologies, innovation ecosystems, and digital transformation. Marco Kamiya was the Coordinator of the Urban Economy and Finance Branch at UN-HABITAT.  He has been a senior officer at CAF Development Bank for Latin America in Caracas, the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington DC, and senior economist of PADECO Co., Ltd., a development consulting firm in Tokyo.


At UNIDO the division implement technical cooperation and prepares methodologies and toolkits on innovation, SMEs and the digital economy, databases, and policy papers. 

Katja Toropainen
Katja is the founder of Inklusiiv, a community with a mission to advance diversity and inclusion in working life. Katja is also an angel investor part of Atomico Angel Programme 2020, award-winning public speaker, writer and columnist. Katja is passionate about more inclusive technology and finance.
Prior to Inklusiiv, Katja was the Chief Curator in the leadership team at Slush, European startup and tech event. She was in charge of the content curation, program coordination and speaker operations for the event with 20,000+ attendees. In her role she followed closely global startup, technology and venture capital trends across Europe and the US and was active in startup networks in the San Francisco Bay Area, London and in the Nordics. Before Slush, Katja has worked in management consulting and financial services. Katja holds a Master’s Degree from Aalto University School of Business and has also completed studies in the fields of engineering and arts at Aalto University.
Neil Walsh
Chief of the Cybercrime and Anti-Money Laundering Section

With staff in six continents, Neil leads the UN Office on Drugs and Crime’s strategic response to cybercrime, money laundering, terrorist financing and counter-proliferation financing by delivering political advice and capacity building around the globe. Neil and his team aid Member State preventive diplomacy. Prior to joining UNDOC, Neil served for over 15 years within the UK National Crime Agency countering international serious organised crime and terrorism including long-term postings to Europol HQ in The Hague and Malta.

Neil is 42, comes from Belfast, Northern Ireland and is married with 4 young children. He holds a B.Sc. (Hons) in Psychology & Criminology and an M.Sc. in Criminal Investigation. He is also an experienced paramedic (EMT-I). In his spare time, Neil advocates for bowel cancer (colorectal cancer), brain haemorrhage, sepsis, pulmonary embolism, and crohn’s disease awareness (having survived all of these conditions).

In December 2021, Neil will become UNODC’s Regional Representative in Eastern Africa, based in Nairobi. 
You can follow him on social media (@NeilWalsh_UN) and listen to his podcast with USG Melissa Fleming here:


Johann Yoon

Director of Corporate Partnerships
Plan International Norway

Johann Yoon is the Director of Corporate Partnerships at Plan International Norway and responsible for the organization’s private sector partnerships. In this role, he works to create strong partnerships to explore innovative solutions and increase Plan’s impact to advance children’s rights. Previously, Johann has worked at DNV where he held the position as Regional Manager in Korea and Japan, and later also in Western Europe. He holds a MsC degree in Industrial Economics and Technology Management from NTNU in Trondheim, Norway. Johann is passionate about using technology and innovative solutions as a tool to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Furthermore, he is driven by the objective of increasing the impact from every dollar invested in Plans mission for a more just world.

Patsilí Toledo Vásquez
Adjunct Professor of Gender and Criminal Justice System
Pompeu Fabra University

Patsilí Toledo is adjunct professor of Gender and Criminal Justice System at the Pompeu Fabra University (Barcelona, Spain) and an international consultant on gender-based violence against women.  As a consultant, she has worked for several international organizations, including the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the CEDAW Committee, UN Women and UNODC, focusing on State's responses to gender-based violence against women, including sexual violence and femicide. She was the leading consultant to the UNODC Global review of emerging evidence on the impact of COVID-19 on Criminal Justice System Response to Gender-based Violence against Women.