Monte-Carlo Women of the Year: Bucking systems and blazing trails

women of monte-carlo

The Monte-Carlo Women of the Year’s 11th edition paid tribute to three women working in technological and digital fields. The Princely couple were on hand to congratulate them on their achievements. 

The Hermitage Hotel was the scene for the 11th edition of the Monte-Carlo Women of the Year awards, which celebrated three exceptional women for their work successes and their actions over the past 12 months.  

Journalist Cinzia Sgambati-Colman hosted the evening, and Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene were there as part of the event.  

This year’s winners include a virtual reality platform designer, a biomedical engineer and an organiser of a competition spotlighting women in tech.  


Aged only 21, Monaco resident Manila Di Giovanni calls herself a “techno-entrepreneur” with the lofty ambition of changing the world. She plans to do this via her multiplayer virtual reality platform called DWorld, which gives users access to Monaco’s twin in the metaverse.  

The idea is to reimagine the Principality, and other cities, in the future. DWorld gives users a “What if?” perspective, with functions that include considering how construction projects could affect the landscape for better or worse.  If Manila has her way, she will be pointing people to a tomorrow where cities are building greener and smarter in an alternate universe that will, hopefully, translate into reality.  

Zimi Sawacha has an impressive background as a mechanical engineer, a doctor of Biomedical Engineering and a professor at the University of Padua.  

She has developed a patent that can predict and prevent risks of injuries using video and a plantar pressure system combined with AI software she created herself. This ground-breaking technology can be used by elite and professional athletes to stop injuries from occurring in the lower parts of the body or, if the injury has already occurred, help them get back in top shape as soon as possible.

The system can also help diabetics and those with post-stroke foot pathologies to monitor changes in their leg muscles. 

Since 2015, Leanne Robers has been building a start-up competition aimed at women in technology. Called She Loves Tech, this idea, hatched in her native Singapore, has grown to be the biggest start-up event for women in tech and is now held in 60 countries around the world.  

Frustrated because, as she said in an interview with Tatler Asia, “people don’t always take women in the tech world seriously,” she decided to take the proverbial bull by the horns and create a platform for women to shine.  

Over 8,000 early-stage vanguard projects have been launched by the competition, and more than $250 million has been raised to support them. Additionally, a new fund created in collaboration with Microsoft has been launched to help women in Asia get their projects off the ground.  


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Photo source: Femmes de l’Année Prix Monte Carlo