Displaying items by tag: ZTE

The ICT industry is commonly known to be male-dominated, especially in China. As a woman, Chen Zhiping, Director of Wireless Solutions at ZTE Corporation, has managed to rise up through the ranks of a company surrounded by male counterparts.

Chen Zhiping (Summer Chen) is an excellent role model for women who aspire to work in the ICT sector. She is able to balance her young family with a top management position at one of the leading global telecom corporations in the world. Chen is the Director of Wireless solutions of the wireless planning department at ZTE, the multinational telecommunications equipment and systems company headquartered in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China. The telecom industry in China is vast with around 1.3 billion cell phone subscribers as of October 2015. There is so much potential in the industry, and yet the one thing that is missing from China’s ICT sector is women.

A perfect example of this was highlighted in late 2015, when Xi Jinping, President of China, met with top U.S. and Chinese technology officials in Seattle, Washington. During the event, the executives gathered to take what has now become an infamous photo because of the absence of women in a group of 26 men. China’s tech industry is apparently just as male-dominated as Silicon Valley’s is in California. Only one Chinese woman and one American woman feature in the image. With China’s economy slowing down, the tech sector could lose ground, therefore women risk missing out on high-paying jobs to men because China is still yet to address this issue of inequality.

Despite the imbalance, Chen Zhiping has managed to emerge at the top of one of China’s leading telecom corporations in an industry dominated by males. When it came to choosing an industry to study at university, Chen did not hold back from her passion. She chose to study electromagnetic systems, which is a very technical area of expertise.

When Chen spoke to Active Telecoms in an exclusive interview, she said she has always been confident that she has the knowledge and ability to deal with technical issues in her industry, however, her field of work is undeniably dominated by men. “Most of my classroom at university consisted of men,” she says.

Technology industries are commonly known to be male dominated. According to a report by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), participation of women in information technology design and development is “generally low”. Women often seem to be placed in the unskilled or low-end of employment, not receiving the training that skilled jobs require.

The report says: “An examination of the extent to which women are represented in decision-making in information technology reflects the progress of women in this field and the possibility that women in positions of power would serve as role models for others, facilitate the entry of other women, and alleviate some of the negative impacts of new technologies of women.”

With more individuals like Chen stepping up and leading by example, the shift from male dominance in the ICT sector could soon begin to level out. After graduating from university, Chen joined ZTE Corporation, a company that provides integrated end-to-end innovations to deliver to consumers, carriers, businesses and public sector customers around the world.

“I joined the wireless R&D (Research & Development) centre for CDMA system development, which is a wireless system communication R&D division,” says Chen, reflecting on her early days at ZTE. As her career continues to progress, Chen is aiming towards working as a hardware engineer, which will be a big step up, but she is certainly up for the challenge.

“At the beginning, I was an RF (Radio Frequency) engineer, designing transceivers,” Chen explained. “After three years I was promoted to a managing position, and then after five years I was again promoted as a director of the entire RF department.”

RF is any of the electromagnetic wave frequencies that lie in the range extending from around 3 kHz to 300 GHz, which include those frequencies used for communications or radar signals. The energy in an RF current can radiate off a conductor into space as electromagnetic waves (radio waves) which is the basis of radio technology.

Although Chen was pleased to be promoted to such an esteemed position within one of China’s leading telecommunications corporations, at the time, she felt it was a “strange” environment working at ZTE because there were “very few women in the industry,” she says, particularly for the RF design department. Like her classroom at university, the majority of Chen’s colleagues at ZTE are men.

But rather than let the imbalance hold her back, Chen remained vigilant, and says she did not face any major challenges working in a male dominated environment.  In fact, she says she found it interesting working with a team of “gentlemen” because they helped her grow and encouraged her to be her best. “All of the employees are very experienced – not just fresh graduates,” said Chen. “They offered me valuable experience. I was just a young girl at the time, so my experience improved working with such an experienced team.”

However, as a woman with a young child, Chen, in her leading position at ZTE, has to manage her demanding job as well as keep her family together – a tough issue facing many women in management positions today. “It is difficult to be a career woman,” says Chen. “It’s hard to balance business and family.” With the support of her husband, Chen is able to balance her busy work and social life. “He understands what I am working towards,” said Chen.

While the ICT industry remains highly male dominated, more and more women around the world are stepping up to the challenge of taking on management positions. In the United States for example, approximately five percent of America’s Fortune 500 companies are led by women. Though this might seem small, it proves that women are able to take the reins and lead major corporations – something that was unheard of a few decades ago. With more women in power in the ICT sector, it will then pave the way for more women to step up and take on management positions in ICT, just like Chen Zhiping.

The future looks bright for Chen, who says she is “not a traditional girl compared to other girls in China.” This sends a positive message to young girls in China and around the world, that it is okay to follow your passion, even if it isn’t a traditional female industry. Chen hopes to continue to further progress in her career in RF. For any girl entering the communications industry, “it is challenging,” says Chen Zhiping, however, she has proven that with determination and a keen interest in a chosen field, anything is possible.

Published in Reports

ZTE and China Unicom co-operate to develop SDN/NFV

Written on Tuesday, 12 April 2016 08:20

ZTE and China Unicom have signed a strategic cooperation agreement on Software Defined Network/Network Function Virtualization (SDN/NFV). They aim to build-on current SDN/NFV network development trend, implement SDN/NFV applications, and promote the next-generation network construction for China Unicom.

In 2015, China Unicom published the New-Generation Network CUBE-Net 2.0 white paper setting out plans for a decoupled and intensive network architecture based on dual centers (a user center and a data center). The white paper also established the basic ideas for subsequent network evolution and construction, with the aim being, according to ZTE, "to achieve leading network service capabilities and optimal productivity during multi-resource collaboration; driving network architecture evolution and deployment adjustment through dual centers; network pattern realizing 3-dimensional decoupling; service functions, logical functions, and deployment functions; promoting intensivism of the control plane, data management, data centers, and network nodes."

The two say they will cooperate using open-source technology, application scenarios, product requirements, service applications, and market development of SDN/NFV technologies, generate research results meeting network evolution requirements and lay a solid foundation for long-term and sustainable partnerships.

They will work with open-source communities, requirement analysis, solution and product development, test verification/PoC, and commercial pilot office deployment for SDN/NFV and will propose draft standards and patent applications, jointly apply for and undertake national key research projects, and share the achievements in the SDN/NFV field.

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