Amidst an august gathering of global women leaders from the Royal families, world organizations, and regional and global industries, the ’17th Global Women Leaders Conference’ kicked-off at the Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai, UAE after its successful track record and recognition in the past 16 years.
Celebrating the 104th International Women’s Day, the 17th edition of Woibex was embellished with some renowned personalities- H.H Princess Ameera Al Taweel, H.E. Sheikha Bodour Bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Ms. Almas Jiwani (President of UN Women National Committee of Canada), Ms.Elise Bijon (Partnerships and Business Development, Middle East, North Africa, Eastern Europe & Central Asia, UNWFP) and many more.
The event, sponsored by First Gulf Pharmaceuticals Centre, Saudi German Hospitals, SLS (Syrian Ladies Society) and partnered by Coca-Cola, Almarai, Unilever, Patchi, Glenda, MicaBeauty Cosmetics, Swiss Arabia, Emirates Women Police Association, Beit Al Arab, Meydan Theatre, Lily Pond , Umm Suqeim Model School, Positive Cancer Foundation, and Al Foah witnessed the coming together of superlative women leaderships from across the globe and connecting women business leaders, entrepreneurs, managers, professionals, and government leaders on the day 1 of the event.
Mr. Ali Al Kamali, Managing Director of Datamatix, extended his warm welcome to the dignitaries and women leaders present at the event. He stressed on the significance of the 104th International Women’s Day and traced back the success and recognition that Woibex has attained in its 16 years journey. He emphasized on the 5 themes that Woibex 2014 would be incorporating in its agenda this year.
He said, “The 17th edition of the Global Women Leaders Conference focuses on 5 key areas of challenges and success of; Corporate Women CEO, Women as Board Members, Innovation, Economic and Knowledge Management, and Women in Engineering (and all pertaining fields). The Woibex 2014 presents you with the latest research and focused study on the challenges faced by global women leaders in the private, public, and international positions with carefully selected cases studies and keynotes in response.”
The opening patron message was presented by Ms. Almas Jiwani, President of UN Women Canada National Committee on ‘Empowering Women in Attaining International Positions’. Weaving in her personal experiences and corporate challenges, she put forward a very interesting and responsive speech on how modern women need to overcome the societal barriers and aim and achieve international positions.
The session was followed by a panel discussion on ‘Women Leaders Challenges and Opportunities in Senior Positions and as Corporate Board Member’. The panel was chaired by Mona Mohamed Fekri, Head of Human Resources, DUCAB; Ms. Khadija Ibrahim Abdulla Al Hammadi, Director, Quality & Development Department, Department of Economic Development (DED), Government of Dubai;Ms. Heba Al Samt, Digital Media Director of Dubai Media INC; Ms. Amna Al Hammadi, Director of Marketing and Communications, Emirates Foundation for Youth Development.
The panel emphasized on the criteria for women leadership in diverse professional areas including government and oil, banking and finance, media and politics, aviation and other senior positions. The panel that included women leaders from various corporate positions elaborated on the gender gap barrier and other significant challenges and opportunities in gaining senior positions.
The coffee break and networking session was followed by a presentation on ‘Business Women: Challenges, Success and the 21st Century Criteria’ by Ms. Nouf Al Khalifa, Director of London Business School wherein she presented insights from personal experience; examples of other professional women in the region including Bahraini Culture Minister Sheikha Mai Bint Mohammed Al Khalifa and case studies and examples of successful London Business School students and alumni.
Ms.Lys Al Riachi, Regional Vice President of Smith & Nephew presented her views on Women & Business Innovation: Driving towards Sustainable Business Growth. Ms. Souad M. Al Hosani, President, Nexus Business Services & Board of Director of American Chamber of Commerce, Abu Dhabi made a presentation on Women & Entrepreneurship: Success & Challenges.
Day 1 concluded with an interactive Q & A session with the speakers and audience that raised many key issues, questions, and comments on global women leadership and success criterion in the 21st century.
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