Dance Queen Robyn Launches Tech Festival For Teen Girls


She is one of the few artists who successfully transitioned from a 90’s pop star and reinvented herself as a force to be reckoned with in the electronic music world with hits such as ‘Dancing on my Own‘ and ‘Hang with Me‘. Aside from her musical prowess, she is a role model for girls now for another reason.

Given the huge push for women in STEM in many countries, Robyn is throwing her hat in the ring and has created a tech festival for teen girls in Sweden called Tekla. It will take place in Stockholm on April 18 and will offer a range of workshops to girls aged 11-18.

Some of the workshops offered include robotics, 3D printing, game development, and electronic music (obviously).

The festival is being held in partnership with KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm which awarded Robyn (real name: Robin Carlsson) their annual Great Prize in 2013. It’s pretty damn cool to see an artist, and a female one at that, being awarded such an honor, but it was because of her innovative use of audio, video, and technology in her creativity that made her a front runner.

Her lyrics refer a lot to technological advances and scientific phenomena such as satellites, robots, the speed of light, time machines, bio-mimicry, planets, processors, and much more.


I thought of KTH’s motto, ‘Science and Art’, and wanted to do something to inspire girls who are curious about technology, while at the same time highlighting that too few women are applying to KTH programs,” Robyn said about Tekla in a statement.

“Tekla is a festival for girls, in which they get to sample different areas of future technology in what I believe will be a fun and imaginative environment.”

Roughly 34% of new students at KTH are women and every fourth engineer in the labor market is a woman. In Sweden, there are only 20% of women who hold jobs in the IT field. This is Robyn’s way of trying to change the ratio and usher in a new generation of STEM heroes.

Unesco research from 2014 shows women form the majority (60%) of students enrolled in a Bachelor’s program in Science in Sweden, but their numbers decline as they move up the education ladder, accounting for 49% of doctoral students and only 36% of researchers.


In her track ‘Fembot’, Robyn sings the lyrics “Once you gone tech you ain’t never going back” which is a reflection of how she marries her love of music with tech.

Other major partners in the Tekla festival include Spotify, Paradox Interactive, and Google who are one of the tech leaders in getting women and girls into the STEM world to even out the ratio.

We’d love to see more celebrities use their platform to influence the next generation in a positive way. Science, tech, engineering and math are undoubtedly the strongest forms of currency we have today and will be in the future. They affect every aspect of our lives and we can’t afford to portray any of these industries as gender specific anymore.

Check out Robyn talking about her love for robots and technology in the video below which was made after she won the KTH Great Prize in 2013:

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  1. Pingback: The F Word: Asha Dahya Rethinks Feminism with GirlTalkHQ | Monica Luhar

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