ADB Seminar

Digital Technologies and Financial Inclusion: Enablers for Gender Equality

Wednesday, 3 May 2023, 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm, Songdo Convensia, Room 104-106

Digital technologies have transformed how societies function in Asia and the Pacific. While the digital transformation has been heralded for innovations that can help accelerate economic growth, it also presents new challenges such as how to ensure that these benefits can be equitably enjoyed by all. Women and girls are at risk of being left further behind due to limited access. This session will examine the entry points for ensuring that digital technologies can deliver gender-responsive and transformative impacts.


Lisette CiprianoSenior Digital Technology Specialist, Finance Sector Group, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, ADB

Lisette Cipriano is passionate about digital financial services and its positive impact on poverty alleviation. Her expertise is in payments, card acquiring and issuing, and alternative payment methods, having worked across continents and with M-Pesa, a mobile phone-based money transfer service at Vodafone Group. She focuses on ADB projects that involve new technologies for financial inclusion such as digital ID, cloud technology, and central bank digital currencies. She recently piloted a digital bank ID in the remote areas of Papua New Guinea.

Melle Tiel Groenestege Digital Inclusion Policy and Advocacy Director, GSM Association

Melle Tiel Groenestege works on policies and advocacy campaigns that address barriers to mobile internet adoption, expand mobile broadband coverage in rural areas, and bridge the digital gender divide. Prior to joining the GSM Association, Mr. Groenestege was responsible for government relations and digital public policy issues at VEON, a telecommunications provider for emerging markets. He also worked at the International Telecommunications Union on corporate strategy, focusing on the role of digital technologies in advancing the UN Sustainable Development Agenda.

Pebbles Sy Chief Technology and Operations Officer, Mynt Globe Fintech Innovations, Inc. (GCash)

Pebbles Sy is responsible for technology, customer experience management, and operations at GCash, a Philippine mobile wallet, mobile payments, and branchless banking service. Ms. Sy has more than 20 years of experience in the information and telecommunications industry, with a deep background in product and platform management, program management, and product development. Prior to her current role, she was the chief information officer at Globe Telecom in the Philippines, where she led its IT transformation and delivered a re-energized IT strategy and landscape that enabled Globe to quickly adapt to the fast-changing digital economy.

Wendy TelekiHead, Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) Secretariat, World Bank

Wendy Teleki is head of the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) Secretariat, which is housed in the World Bank Group. The Secretariat is responsible for supporting the We-Fi Governing Committee in the allocation and supervision of We-Fi funding as well as communications, advocacy, and learning focused on strengthening opportunities for women entrepreneurs. Prior to her current role, Ms. Teleki worked with the International Finance Corporation, leading numerous activities and initiatives focused on small and medium enterprise development in emerging markets around the world.


Sharanjit LeylFormer Senior Broadcast Journalist, BBC News

Sharanjit Leyl has spent 18 years with BBC World News, covering business and politics, anchoring from its Asia bureau and from London's Broadcasting House. A national of Singapore, she has produced and presented BBC documentaries on TV and radio about her city and was commended as best news presenter at the Asian TV Awards. Ms. Leyl now regularly moderates high-level debates for the United Nations, ADB, World Bank, and other multilateral and financial institutions.