programme detail

Navigating diversity in a disrupted society

Monika Queisser - Head of Social Policy Division, OECD

Pam Jeffords - Partner, Global Leader of "When Women Thrive" at Mercer

Bill Proudman - Founding Partner and CEO, White Men as Full Diversity Partners

We live in disrupted times, and this disruption risks slowing progress towards gender equality. Basic rights concerning gender equality are being put to test, with multiple cases of sexual harassment and unrestrained work culture coming to light. Digital and technological disruption are transforming the workplace. The World Economic Forum estimates that 35% of job skills will change by 2020 and that women risk being the most impacted. And in these times where VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, ambiguity) is becoming the norm, companies are tempted to set aside their good intentions on gender balance to deal with ever-increasing pace of change.

To the contrary, in the face of such disruption, gender equality is more important than ever. We must not become complacent and assume that gender equality is a given. Sexism, stereotypes and biases have to be tackled at all levels. Women need to be more ambitious than ever and take advantage of their skills to position themselves in this new world. Managers need to step-up for gender balance and engage in difficult conversations. And companies must go beyond good intentions to fast-track their actions towards gender balance