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Spotlighting Women in the Global RISC-V Community this International Women’s Day

By March 8, 2024No Comments

International Women’s Day, celebrated annually on March 8, recognizes the remarkable achievements of women across the globe. It is an important day to acknowledge the progress achieved in women’s rights and empower each other to continue striving for equality. As an organization that prioritizes global collaboration, RISC-V International recognizes the importance that collective action plays in driving progress forward. 

The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is Inspire Inclusion. To inspire inclusion means to celebrate diversity and empowerment not only on International Women’s Day but every single day. RISC-V International is committed to uplifting women and highlighting the incredible contributions and accomplishments of women within our diverse global ecosystem.

Today, we are excited to spotlight four talented women who contribute to our growing RISC-V community: 

Read more about their stories and connection to RISC-V below. 

Teresa Cervero Garcia

Leading Research Engineer at Barcelona Supercomputing Center

Location: Spain
In 2023, you were named RISC-V Community Contributor, in recognition of your leadership, evangelism, and community outreach that brought the community together and grew the contribution efforts of the community. Congrats! What does an honor like this mean to you?

The award is a tremendous honor that came unexpectedly! It is a reminder of all the things I have learnt, and all the things I still need to learn. This recognition is as much mine as the community. All the activities I have (co-)organized/lead were possible thanks to: 1) an important dose of team-work during the preparation and execution, and 2) the community support (by actively contributing with their work, and/or attending to learn more about others’ work).

RISC-V community is amazing! It is very active, dynamic, and grows day by day. Every single person in the community is excited about RISC-V! People love to show, discuss, teach, learn, and share results. Another nice thing about this community is that it brings the opportunity of contributing in different ways. One of the mechanisms I have found to support the community is precisely by creating physical or virtual spaces for them to make those discussions happen, identifying topics of interest and connecting people. It is not the only one, but probably the most effective for me. Of course, I am not the only one doing this. That is the key! Together we are stronger and go further! 

Women are too often underrepresented in technology. Can you tell us the story of how you got into technology? 

This is always a tricky question for me. What many people expect is to listen/read that I always knew I wanted to work in technology or become an engineer. That is not my case. When I was a teenager, I dreamed of becoming a medical doctor. Later, I became a doctor… but not that kind of doctor.

As a practical person, when I was seventeen, I decided to study telecommunication engineering. It seemed to me a good option due to the world’s trend towards digitalization. To be honest, I didn’t know much about it. However, I did it. I really enjoyed the journey. It was hard, I cannot deny it. I would like to demystify the myth that you need to be a genius to study engineering. No, you are not. You need to persevere, to be constant, to really want to do it, and love who you are on the way.

The world of technology is exciting! From the moment I started telecommunication, my professional career was linked to technology, and to this day! 

If you could share a piece of advice with your younger self, what would it be?

There are several things I have learned, so not sure which one would be better for a younger version of myself. One thing I repeat to my children is that they have to decide by themselves. No matter what others say or think. What is really important is to decide what they want (or don’t want to do), and be responsible and consequence with the result. If the result is not the expected one… it is not a failure, it is a lesson learnt. Another important piece of advice is to be kind to ourselves. It is useless to compare ourselves with others, since we are different (different personalities, different histories, different circumstances, different dreams, different motivations, etc.). We (I) tend to be very self-demanding and that has a cost. We have to learn to be kind with ourselves, and take care of our health, our time, our family and put in front what is really important. 

What RISC-V projects are you working on that excite you the most?

There are several! But one important project is being part of the steering committee of the RISC-V Summit Europe. For me it is an opportunity of working very close with professionals from whom I am learning a lot, and it is an opportunity to help the community to have a space where to know more about how real RISC-V is. 


Fatima Khurshid

Senior Verification Engineer at 10xEngineers

Location: Pakistan
Did you have any role models that inspired you in your career journey?

I have drawn inspiration from numerous individuals throughout my career journey. I have been fortunate enough to have mentors and colleagues who have always provided me with invaluable guidance, support, and encouragement, and helped shape the trajectory of my professional journey.

What technical developments happening in the RISC-V ecosystem excites you the most?

For me, the most exciting development in the RISC-V ecosystem recently has been the growth of the software ecosystem. The continuous expansion of software tools, libraries, and frameworks specifically designed for RISC-V architectures is making it easier and more efficient to develop and deploy applications on these platforms.

What advice would you give to someone who is looking to become more involved in the RISC-V community? 

There are several ways in which anyone who wants to become more involved can improve their visibility within the RISC-V community:

  • Become a RISC-V advocate/ambassador and drive the RISC-V adoption effort within local communities
  • Join the RISC-V Discussions forum on GitHub to connect with other community members, ask questions, and participate in ongoing discussions
  • Attend RISC-V workshops, conferences, meetups, etc. within local communities and internationally to gain valuable insights and network with industry professionals
  • Contribute in working groups and open source projects (through github or the RISC-V Mentorship program) to gain practical experience, build skills and work towards shaping the future of this exciting technology


Jennifer Winikus, PhD

Associate Teaching Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Lehigh University

Location: U.S.
How did you get started with RISC-V?

Fall 2020 was a super stressful time as a professor and my classes weren’t really in my specialty. I was considering switching careers to industry. I randomly saw the opportunity for academics to attend the RISC-V Summit online for free. It was amazing to see the passion from so many people in academia and industry, the talks reminded me of the ideas that got me excited to be a computer engineer. Then what put me on the trajectory to stay in academia and get involved with RISC-V was meeting with Dr. Sarah Harris and the CEO of RISC-V International, Calista Redmond, to talk about the opportunities to engage students with RISC-V. I was inspired (and still am) to contribute to this amazing community through my passion for engineering education and to show students the amazing potential they can have with RISC-V. 

As an active participant in the RISC-V Academic and Training Special Interest Group, what is your favorite project that you’ve worked on recently?

My favorite project recently has been working on the Video Contest due to working with the diverse team in the RISC-V Academic and Training Special Interest Group to develop an activity that is educational, meaningful, and inclusive for all members of the RISC-V community from the new students and community members to the more experienced researchers from all over the world. 

As a professor, is there one piece of advice you give your students looking to enter the embedded tech industry? 

Think outside the box of what it means to be someone in the embedded industry. It can be easy to forget that advancing technology requires creativity and communication, embrace those opportunities as well to help prepare you. 

Any anecdotes or special moments you can share as a professor? 

There was a lab that was over an hour of debugging an embedded project. We had the students that were working on the lab, a couple TAs, and even a few other grad students take a look. By that point we were all frustrated, and finally, we found two silly issues. There was one number that was off by a value slightly which was changing the behavior and we had a connection one pin off. We all started laughing when it finally worked. It is important to remember, no matter how long you have been doing something, mistakes happen and getting support to solve the issues are important. This also reinforces why we prototype in this industry.


An Xu

Deputy Director of the External Cooperation Department at the Beijing Institute of Open Source Chip

Location: China
What is the favorite part of your role at the Beijing Institute of Open Source Chip?

As a member of the Beijing Institute of Open Source Chip, my favorite part is contributing to the open source work, focusing on the development of the open source chip technology ecosystem and community. We aim to enable more enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, and vendors to learn about and utilize existing open source achievements, benefiting them in terms of cost reduction, development time savings, and improved efficiency. These outcomes highlight the societal value generated by the open source work of the Beijing Institute of Open Source Chip.

How does the Beijing Institute of Open Source Chip contribute to the growing adoption of embedded tech, such as RISC-V?

The Beijing Institute of Open Source Chip promotes the adoption through open source. We constantly update the high-performance open source processor Xiangshan, offering the latest advancements. Moreover, we’ve launched iEDA open-source tools and plan to provide open-source chip verification and SOC rapid generation platforms this year. These resources will be available to the community in open-source format.

What has been your favorite aspect of working in the open source ecosystem?

My favorite aspect of working in the open source ecosystem is the opportunity to communicate and discuss with partners from different countries worldwide. Through open source, we can understand each other, collaborate, and work together to advance projects and achieve goals. This spirit of global cooperation greatly motivates me.

We want to thank Teresa, Fatima, Jennifer and An Xu for their thoughtful responses and for all that they do to strengthen the global RISC-V ecosystem. Stay tuned for Part 2 of this series, coming soon!  

We included a few resources below to help everyone stay informed this Women’s History Month.


  • International Women’s Day | International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality. IWD has occurred for well over a century, with the first IWD gathering in 1911 supported by over a million people.
  • National Women’s History Museum | The National Women’s History Museum is a museum and an American history organization that “researches, collects and exhibits the contributions of women to the social, cultural, economic and political life of our nation in a context of world history.”
  • RISC-V Careers | Interested in a career in RISC-V? The RISC-V community is hiring! We are always looking for diverse candidates who are passionate about RISC-V. View our open job postings. 
  • Women in STEM (WiSTEM) | Women in STEM is an international organization working with high schools globally to inspire and empower young women to pursue STEM.

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