The Google Global Impact money will be used to help further research at the Geena Davis Institute of Gender in Media, which the Thelma & Louise star founded in 2004.
Davis and her colleagues have been examining the depiction of female characters in tech-related roles in entertainment, and now hope to extend their research worldwide.
She tells Forbes.com, "Of course we're thrilled and honoured at the award. (It will) profoundly improve (the organisation's) ability to scale up, research more broadly and, most excitingly, help us to expand globally... We really have a long way to go in the work that needs to be done. A huge part of the problem of not having enough girls and women going into tech fields is because children aren't exposed to characters that have these jobs. Girls don't have characters to aspire to, sure, but boys don't see these characters either. And as a result don't see women and girls as being competent equals...
"How are they doing in England, Scandinavia and India? Maybe there are places where they are creating great content for girls."
The Thelma & Louise star founded the Geena Davis Institute of Gender in Media in 2004 and since then the actress has devoted much of her life to female empowerment and levelling the playing field for girls and women in showbusiness.
And the mum of three reveals it all started because she wanted to create a better world for her daughter Alizeh.
She tells industry publication Variety, "What happened in 2004 was that my daughter was about two years old and I started watch little kids' programming, like G-rated videos and movies. And I was floored to see what I perceived to be a huge gender disparity in these things that were aimed at little kids...
"I picked up on this right away, but I didn't intend to make a whole life's mission out of it! I simply started asking friends if they were noticing... No one noticed, until I said something. So then I decided that I would see what people in the industry said.
"So whenever I had a meeting with a producer or a studio head or somebody, I would say, 'Have you noticed how few female characters there are in G-rated movies?' And pretty much to a person, they would say, 'Oh no, no, that's been fixed.' This all made me realise that... clearly people aren't recognising it or think the problem has already been fixed. So that's what led me to launch this whole thing...
"My theory is that if we can change what kids see, if they can see boys and girls sharing the same sandbox equally in the beginning, that will impact how boys view girls and how girls view girls later in life."
The Thelma & Louise star put pen to paper to write a story about a raccoon, but was ordered to change the plot in case children found it upsetting.
She tells the Chicago Sun-Times, "I did write a book about a very funny raccoon. A friend of mine took it to his publisher and said I had to make it right. My raccoon died. I guess that doesn't play..."
However, Sarandon isn't giving up on the project. She adds, "I might finish that raccoon book."
Hayek handed the Gucci Award to the three-time Oscar winner during the 2012 Venice Film Festival in recognition of her work editing Scorsese's acclaimed film Hugo.
Gucci bosses also pledged a $25,000 (£15,625) grant in the Hollywood editor's name to the film and TV school at New York University, where she first met Scorsese.
The 72 year old acknowledged Scorsese after scooping the prize, telling The Associated Press, "I just don't think I would have become a filmmaker if I hadn't met him. He was just a student and I helped him salvage his negatives. He had cut them wrong... and that's the beginning of our relationship of trust... With me and him it's about the film and it's a wonderful collaboration."
Schoonmaker has worked on all of Scorsese's feature film, bagging Academy Awards for Raging Bull, The Aviator and The Departed.
The veteran star, who is credited with paving the way for female comediennes, passed away in her sleep at her Los Angeles home on Monday (20Aug12), months after falling and injuring her wrist and hip, reports TMZ.com.
Born in Ohio, Diller enjoyed a career spanning five decades, breaking into radio and TV in 1952.
She began performing stand-up and co-starred with U.S. TV legend Bob Hope in a variety of TV specials and films such as Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number! and The Private Navy of Sgt. O'Farrell.
Known for her witty wisecracks and her unusual, signature laugh, Diller made regular appearances on popular comedy show Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In and carved out a movie career for herself with roles in 1961's Splendor in the Grass and 1967 Mad Monster Party.
She also landed her own variety show, The Beautiful Phyllis Diller Show in 1968, and went on to voice the character of the Queen in A Bug's Life and Peter Griffin's mother, Thelma, in a 2006 episode of Family Guy.
She also starred on Broadway in a 1969 production of the musical Hello, Dolly!.
The Thelma & Louise star has worked mainly on the big screen since shooting to fame in the 1970s, garnering five Academy Award nominations along the way.
Sarandon is asked to play leading roles on the small screen every year, but snubs the offers due to restrictive contracts - and admits she doesn't even own a TV.
She tells the New York Daily News, "Every season, I'm approached to do a series, but I'm a little phobic about that much commitment. I guess I'm saving it for my really old age. To be honest, I don't even have a TV."
Sarandon has made guest appearances in several small screen hits, including Friends, 30 Rock and The Big C.
The actress, who recently made her acting comeback in TV movie Liz & Dick, admits she's a big fan of the Oscar nominee and is keen to work with her.
In a tweet posted on Friday (20Jul12), Lohan writes, "Jennifer Lawrence in The Hunger Games is genius. I want to do Thelma&Louise w/her (with her) but ala Natural Born Killers (style wise) 2 girls-2 guys... Thoughts?"
The Thelma & Louise star received a lifetime achievement prize at the 47th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival and when she took to the stage, she used her acceptance speech to remember her friend Ephron, who died of cancer last month (Jun12).
Sarandon struggled to fight back tears as she told the audience, "I dedicate this to Nora Ephron. My friend and a wonderful director and writer."
The moving speech won her a standing ovation.
British actress Dame Helen Mirren received an award at the festival last week (ends08Jul12) and she also paid tribute to the Sleepless in Seattle moviemaker, urging more female directors to follow in Ephron's footsteps.
The Thelma & Louise icon received the Trevor Project's Hero Award from actor Stanley Tucci in recognition of her support for the suicide prevention organisation at a star-studded gala on Monday (25Jun12).
Speaking at the event, Sarandon told students who have been teased over the Internet to ignore their tormentors, insisting bullies are usually "losers".
She says, "Usually the people that have time to go online and sit there and be negative are such losers. But, of course, you can't understand that when you're a kid."
Sarandon went on to admit she has never logged online to read critics' reviews of her performances, insisting she has no idea how to switch on a computer.
She tells the New York Post gossip column Page Six, "I wouldn't even know how to Google myself. I don't know how to touch a computer. I don't want to know. Even stuff that's really good shouldn't get stuck in your head, because it's not real."
Stanley Tucci will present the Thelma & Louise icon with the Trevor Project's Hero Award at a star-studded gala in New York on Monday (25Jun12), in recognition of her support for the cause.
Sarandon says, "It is truly an honour to be recognised by The Trevor Project as a Trevor Hero. All people deserve respect, and young people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender deserve to know that there are people who care for them and who are fighting to make this world a better and more accepting place for them."
Previous recipients of the award include Lady Gaga and Daniel Radcliffe.