Women of the World festival
Malala Yousafzai waves after speaking at the Women of the World Festival in 2014Getty

International Women's Day is marked every year with events to celebrate the social, cultural and economic achievements of women and highlight the pressing issues they continue to face, from pay inequality to barriers to reproductive rights. From workshops and talks to comedy nights, here is our pick of the best events around Britain for IWD 2016.

Women of the World, London (8-13 March)

Southbank Centre's WOW festival is a global network of festivals which provide a platform for championing gender equality, celebrating the advancement of women and looking at the obstacles they face worldwide. Launched in 2011 on the centenary of IWD by Jude Kelly, it has grown internationally with 15 festivals on five continents to date. See Wow.southbankcentre.co.uk for tickets.

Stemettes Rise Hack, London (5-6 March)

With no previous experience in coding necessary, this event is simply for girls and young women interested in computers to explore the creative world of tech. As Stemettes is aimed at getting more girls into STEM (science, tech, engineering, maths) subjects and careers, the event is for girls aged five to 22 (and 22+ if not in full time employment). If under 16, you will need an adult with you.

The event takes place at Rise London Whitechapel.

Wonder Women, Manchester (4-13 March)

Discussions, art and film screenings – Wonder Women events are taking place across the city. You can even go on a walking tour of Manchester's most influential female exports, from Marie Stopes to the Pankhursts. Events take place until Sunday – check the full list.

DIY taster sessions, Leeds (7-9 March)

To mark International Women's Day, Leeds College of Building is offering free taster sessions to any women interested in learning basic DIY skills or those interested in a career in construction. You can try your hand at plumbing, electrics, wall and floor tiling, carpentry, plastering and even brickwork, all for free. There are no formal entry requirements, but you must be over 16.

He Named Me Malala and Q&A, Birmingham (9 March)

The Drum will host a screening of director Davis Guggenheim's extraordinary documentary about Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai, who survived being shot in the head by a Taliban gunman for championing girls' education in Pakistan. Guggenheim records intimate moments with Yousafzai and her family, giving viewers an insight into the activist's life. The screening will be followed by a Q&A. Doors open at 7pm and the screening begins at 7.30pm.

Reel Women, Birmingham (8 March)

Also at the Drum, Reel Women is a programme of short films produced and directed by Birmingham-based female filmmakers which address issues from dementia to reggae music. The event focuses on why the film industry needs more women, particularly from ethnically diverse backgrounds. Doors open 7pm, screenings start 7.30pm. Entry is £3.

Birkenstomp – queer feminist festival, Cardiff (20 March)

Birkenstomp – a day of music, discussions, spoken word performances and workshops on gender and sexuality. There is even a sex-positive ceramics workshop. Free entry, although donations are gratefully accepted. From 4pm until late, at Little Man Coffee Co. See the full line-up.

SheFest, Sheffield (12 March)

SheFest is Sheffield's inaugural IWD fringe festival with activities, performances and discussions. The main event is at Sheffield Hallam Union on Saturday. Check the programme of events.

Pledge for Parity lunch, Glasgow (8 March)

The People's Bank of Govanhill will host a lunchtime discussion on gender parity on Tuesday, with a focus on economic equality. Pay what you can afford for lunch vouchers, midday to 2pm.

International Women's Day Brighton & Hove (5 March)

Brighton Dome and Brighton Women's Centre is hosting a special day packed with events and activities on Saturday. Expect films, workshops, talks, dance, children's activities, food stalls, self-defence classes, creative writing classes and more. There will also be a panel discussion featuring Green MP Caroline Lucas. 10am - 4pm, Brighton Dome and The Corn Exchange.

You can find more events around the UK on the International Women's Day website.