The Institute for African Women in Law (IAWL) participated in a two-day conference on legal tech in Zambia on the 10th and 11th of November 2022.
The conference brought together GIZ’s Enabling Access to Justice, Civil Society Participation and Transparency (EnACT) project and its partners. The attendees discussed how legal aid service providers in Zambia, such as paralegals, can benefit from using technology in their work. They further presented legal tech solutions from around the world and called upon legal and tech-minded organizations to share ideas on legal tech for legal aid.
The Director of Operations for IAWL, Atchere Asuah-Kwasi, participated in the conference on behalf of the organization and presented on both days. During the lightning talks aimed at legal tech solutions around the world, she disclosed some significant challenges faced by women in the legal profession, which included gender inequality, lack of women in leadership, the non-highlighting of the formidable works of women in law, and lack of data and information on African women in law.
Ms. Asuah-Kwasi intimated that IAWL aims to assist in mitigating these challenges and cause systemic change through its four focal areas: research, training, advocacy and mentorship. Ms. Asuah-Kwasi informed participants that despite IAWL’s efforts to mitigate these challenges, it also has its limitations. For example, IAWL’s regional reach is limited; therefore, IAWL needs to partner and collaborate with organizations with similar goals to promote the works of African women in law. In addition, IAWL faces the following barriers: cultural dynamics, lack of financial and human resources, and difficulty in finding adequate data on African women in law.
In her concluding remarks, Ms. Asuah-Kwasi reiterated that the future is female and it's technology. The world is going virtual, and the legal profession is no exception. She affirmed the need for an all-hands-on-deck approach to make access to justice efficient and effective.
The Future is FEMTECH!