Women who move the future

Women who move the future

 

  • Women play a key role in designing tomorrow's mobility
  • Connectivity, voice-activated assistants or cybersecurity are areas where SEAT has female engineers and experts
  • Due to their driving habits and greater ecological awareness, several studies emphasise the role of women in implementing electric cars and carsharing
  • The number of female engineers has doubled in the past five years in countries such as the UK

Women have influenced the evolution of motoring. The rear-view mirror, turn signals and road lines are all innovations with a female flare.  Their role was key in the past, but will be even more so in the future, on the road to electric, shared and connected mobility. On the one hand, as users: various studies indicate that, due to their interests and driving habits, they will be instrumental in the electric car and carsharing market. But also as creators. For example, three women at SEAT are leading the development of such vital areas for the future as connectivity, voice assistants and cybersecurity. These are their stories.

Loud and clear. At only 27, Anna Homs is developing the voice assistants we will be using in 2030. She leads a team of professionals from China, the USA and Germany who study user’s needs and think of concepts ten years in advance. “Voice assistants are going to be a key element in the future of mobility, as it is a simple and comfortable form of communication that is increasingly common at home, with the mobile phone and, of course, in the car”, says Anna, SEAT engineer and Volkswagen Group Innovation Project Manager.

For this industrial engineer, the exciting thing about the automotive world is the disruption it is experiencing at this very moment. “We are in a crucial moment of many changes and challenges and I think it's essential to get involved to do it your way”, she points out.

A connected future.  Connectivity is a central element in the mobility of today and tomorrow. For Paqui Lizana, SEAT's Digital Products Manager, the main objective of her work is to make increasingly complex things easier to deal with. “In a fully connected ecosystem, we will proactively suggest to the user the best way to get around at all times, whether by car, motorcycle... With the future in mind, digital products will be the key to giving them the experience they want and letting them take it from one vehicle to another”, she explains.

A fellow engineer, but in telecommunications, she agrees with Anna Homs on the importance of the moment. “My passion is to bring about change. I believe that our contribution is very valuable, as the key to innovation is diversity”, she claimos.  Now 37, she has seen the number of women in the engineering sector grow. In countries like the United Kingdom, the number of female engineers has doubled in five years, reaching 58,000 in 2018, according to the Women in STEM association.

In order to make technical studies and the automotive sector more attractive to female candidates, SEAT has started to collaborate with the UPC (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya) in their STEM program. This initiative aims to promote technical carriers directly to children between 9 and 12 years old, the age where it is considered that they decide their professional preferences. Some female engineers working at SEAT will give lectures in their middle schools to inform female students of the opportunities available to them after their studies

 Cybersecurity of tomorrow. And for that future of connected mobility to be secure, Mareike Gross's role is critical.  In SEAT's Development Department, she leads the Electrical Systems, Packaging and Cybersecurity team. “We're working very hard on the digital protection of cars to protect them from hypothetical attacks”, Mareike explains.

Although she graduated in Economics, her career has always been linked to automotive development. She grew up near Stuttgart (Germany), the city that thrives on the motor industry. “When I came to SEAT, I was happy to see the number of women working in development. I really think it's important that we are here, because we have to design mobility that takes into account different interests and needs, mobility that is all-inclusive”, she says.

Instrumental in electric and shared mobility. It is because of these interests and needs that women will revolutionise the sales of electric car, according to a study by the University of Sussex and Denmark's Aarhus University. They give more priority to safety and user-friendliness and take greater account of costs and the environment. This is why carsharing will also have great potential among them, a report by the European Commission confirms. For example, the annual distance travelled by female drivers tends to be shorter than that of male drivers and carsharing is considered to be more effective for a range of 15,000 to 18,000 kilometres per year.

 

Three women who are shaping the future

Story image

Name: Anna Homs

Age: 27

Education: Industrial Engineering

Experience: Head of Project Innovation

Hobby: Football (offensive midfielder)

 

Story image

Name: Paqui Lizana

Age: 37

Education: Telecommunications Engineering

Experience: Head of Digital Products at SEAT

Hobby: Travelling

 

Story image

Name: Mareike Gross

Age: 41

Education: Economic Science

Experience: Head of Electrical Systems, Package and Cybersecurity at SEAT

Hobby: Foodie

 

Dirk Steyvers PR & Content Manager SEAT & CUPRA, s.a. D'Ieteren n.v.

 

SE20-22E - SEAT leading ladies (4p).pdf 714 KB SE20-22E - SEAT leading ladies.docx 212 KB

 

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Press room SEAT Import (België) voorbehouden voor journalisten

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SEAT

SEAT is de enige constructeur die in Spanje wagens ontwerpt, ontwikkelt, bouwt en commercialiseert. De multinational, die deel uitmaakt van de Volkswagen-groep, heeft zijn hoofdzetel in Martorell (Barcelona) en exporteert 80% van zijn wagens naar 80 verschillende landen op de 5 continenten. In 2019 verkocht SEAT 574.100 auto’s, het hoogste aantal in de geschiedenis van het merk.

De SEAT-groep stelt meer dan 15.000 personen te werk en beschikt over drie productiecentra: Barcelona, El Prat de Llobregat en Martorell, waar onder andere de bijzonder succesvolle Ibiza, Arona en Leon worden gebouwd. Verder bouwt SEAT de Ateca in Tsjechië, de Tarraco in Duitsland, de Alhambra in Portugal en de Mii electric, SEAT's eerste volledig elektrische auto, in Slovakije.

De multinational beschikt over een Technical Centre dat fungeert als een kennishub en meer dan 1.000 ingenieurs telt die focussen op de vernieuwende ontwikkelingen voor Spanje's grootste investeerder in R&D. SEAT pakt binnen zijn gamma uit met de nieuwe connectiviteitstechnologie en zet momenteel volop in op de wereldwijde digitalisering van het bedrijf om zo de mobiliteit van morgen te promoten.

D'Ieteren NV

D'Ieteren, opgericht in 1805 en verder uitgebouwd over verschillende familiegeneraties heen, streeft groei en waardecreatie na dankzij een langetermijnstrategie voor zijn ondernemingen, alsook een actieve stimulering en ondersteuning zodat deze ondernemingen hun positie kunnen ontwikkelen in hun sector of in hun regio's. De Groep heeft momenteel de volgende activiteiten:

  • D'Ieteren Auto verdeelt in België de voertuigen van de merken Volkswagen, Audi, SEAT, Škoda, Bentley, Lamborghini, Bugatti, Porsche en Yamaha. Het heeft een marktaandeel van ongeveer 22% en 1,2 miljoen voertuigen in omloop. Het businessmodel evolueert om het sociale leven van de burgers te verbeteren dankzij vlotte, toegankelijke en duurzame mobiliteit. De omzet en het aangepaste bedrijfsresultaat bedroegen respectievelijk 3,6 miljard EUR en 119,0 miljoen EUR in 2019.
  • Belron (54,85% van de stemrechten) streeft een duidelijke doelstelling na: “het verschil maken door de problemen van klanten met veel zorg op te lossen”. Belron is de wereldleider in de herstelling en vervanging van voertuigbeglazing. De onderneming is actief in 39 landen, via volle dochterondernemingen en franchises, met marktleidende merken – zoals Carglass®, Safelite® en Autoglass®. Daarnaast beheert Belron voertuigbeglazings- en andere verzekeringsclaims in naam van verzekeraars. De omzet en het aangepaste bedrijfsresultaat bedroegen respectievelijk 4,2 miljard EUR en 400,5 miljoen EUR in het boekjaar 2019.
  • Moleskine (voor 100% eigendom) is een premium en inspirerend lifestyle merk. Het bedrijf ontwikkelt onder een iconisch merk notebooks en schrijf-, reis- en leesaccessoires die in meer dan 100 landen worden verkocht via een multi-channel distributiestrategie. De omzet en het bedrijfsresultaat bedroegen respectievelijk 163,9 miljoen EUR en 18,6 miljoen EUR in 2019.
  • D’Ieteren Immo (100%) bundelt de vastgoedactiviteiten van de groep D’Ieteren in België. De onderneming heeft ongeveer 30 sites die in 2018 een netto huurinkomsten van 19,7 miljoen EUR gegenereerd hebben. Ze voert ook investeringsprojecten uit en studies met het oog op de opwaardering van sites.

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