Women’s Forum Asia 2019, a major platform putting women’s ideas forward, dedicated to highlighting women’s voices and perspectives on global issues, took place from 18 to 20 September at the Raffles Convention Centre in Singapore.
The forum focused mainly on how gender equality can and should be implemented in the workplace, and that addressing societal bias and championing for diversity in the workplace is the responsibility of all women.
There were around 120 speakers and 1500 attendees at the three-day forum.
Within these numbers, Cambodia had sent a delegation of over 50 talented women including renowned professionals from industries such as education, agro-industry and hospitality.
The president of Singapore, Mdm Halimah Yacob, opened the event with a keynote on how gender equality and women leaders can benefit companies and societies.
She cited a study the International Finance Corporation had done on more than 1,000 Asian firms, stating that companies where at least 30 percent of the directors were females, fared better than firms that had only males on their boards.
This highlights the importance of increasing the amount of participation of women, both in the workplace and on the boards.
During one of the discussions, Bursa Malaysia Chairman Shireen Muhiudeen mentioned that the invention of new technologies means that women could participate in the workforce while working from home.
During one of the discussions, “Step In, Step Out: Closing the Leadership Gap in the Boardroom”, Ms Sarah Cottle, global head of market insight for S&P Global Platts, mentioned that legislative measure should be put in place as gender quotas in some countries have been effective.
At the same discussion, non-executive chairman of strategic communications at FTI Consulting, Ms Louis Harvey, pointed out that to bring about gender quotas, one has to “be prepared to challenge people in leadership roles to make changes”.
Speakers at the forum also discussed who from the private sector has the responsibility to address climate change and shift the value of women’s leadership.