Bridging gender divides by creating an environment in which more women-led start-ups thrive in tech is the force that drives internet governance specialist, Doreen Mokoena. In her work, she administers the .za namespace and arms the end-user with compliance regulations to better navigate emerging technologies in digital forensics, business intelligence, policy and data privacy.
Mokoena formed part of the South African delegation, alongside Deputy Minister Pinky Kekana of the department of digital technologies, at the 2019 Global Internet Governance Forum in Germany, which was organised by the German government, an invitation she considers to be a career-defining moment. Here she highlighted issues surrounding inclusion, cybersecurity and policy and regulations. She said South Africa has the leading number of registered domain names in Africa and being given the opportunity to form part of the ICANN Domain Name Abuse strategy and policy advisory panel was “pleasing beyond my expectations and imagination”.
With qualifications in forensic law, digital forensics and policing science, she’s well equipped for the task.
Mokoena says her success alone is not enough: she would like women to be able to break the glass ceiling and claim more leadership roles in the male-dominated tech industry.
She has judged one of the country’s biggest annual hackathons three times in a row. Cultivating business intelligence talent through innovation and emerging technologies is an unbelievable achievement. But she says that even though being honoured with industry-led accolades feels like good progress, “not enough women are given the space to make waves”.