International Women’s Day: 8 events to inform and inspire

From webinars to workshops, these eight EMEA-focused, in-person and virtual events will inspire and inform you on International Women’s Day 2022 and beyond

International Women’s Day (IWD) – celebrated globally on March 8 – is a global initiative that celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity in, among other places, the public and private sectors. Significant worldwide activity is witnessed each year on IWD worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women’s achievements and rally for women’s equality.

This year’s global theme for 2022 is #BreaktheBias. It comes at a significant moment in time. Studies show that the pandemic has had a disproportionately negative impact on women, in work and in life. Biases are being highlighted not only in the boardroom, decision-making bodies, and in the media: they are also showing up in homes, schools and communities across the world.

These biases are taking a toll on female mental health. And when women suffer, societies weaken.

From Africa to Europe to the Middle East, discover these eight EMEA-focused IWD webinars, summits and in-person conferences being held March 8 and March 9.


March8 Launch Event

March 8, 10am – 4pm (GMT)

London, UK / in-person

To register, click here

Coinciding with the launch of March8 – a new digital magazine and online community that aims to Educate, Motivate and Elevate women around the world – this in-person event will feature inspirational speakers and panel discussions.

Speakers include Frances Holmes, Founder and CEO of Speak Out Revolution; award-winning journalist Zara Janjua; wellness expert Kate Cook; Bayer’s SVP for Talent and Inclusion & Diversity, Beatriz Rodriguez; and fitness entrepreneur Kimberlee Perry of ((Bounce)).

The sessions will be available to view on-demand after the event, with more events planned on a quarterly basis.

Panel discussion: Celebrating Women that Break the Bias


March 8, 1-2pm (GMT)

London, UK / virtual

To sign up, click here

Join one of the world’s largest fintechs, Finastra, for a panel discussion featuring inspirational women leaders in fintech. The Women@Finastra panel features: Nelly Chatue-Diop, CEO and co-founder of Ejara, Africa’s first non-custodial wallet and blockchain-based mobile investment platform uniquely tailored for Francophone Africa; Natacha Baumann, head of Data Strategy at BNP Paribas Personal Finance; Mrin Agarwal, founder of FinSafe India, which is focused on equipping Indians with strategies to handle their money based on goals, growth and safety; and Tram Anh Nguyen, co-founder of CFTE (Centre for Finance, Technology and Entrepreneurship), a global platform for education in fintech. These female fintech leaders will discuss how they have navigated their careers, including achievements and the lessons learnt; how they are helping fellow women with financial inclusion, overcome persisting biases in the workplace and in fintech; and how everyone can encourage more women into STEM careers.


Forbes Woman Africa Leading Women Summit


March 8, 11am – March 9, 4pm GMT

Nigeria / virtual

To register, click here

This free-to-attend, two-day summit will take place on the Hopin virtual platform. Themed ‘Resetting Everything: The New Face of Leadership’, the fully virtual seventh edition of the Forbes Africa summit, sponsored by Mastercard, will bring together another powerful community of visionary champions. These industry leaders will use this platform to reflect on the times, trends and topics leading pandemic recovery in Africa and the world. With an unparalleled speaker line-up, this year’s event promises to be a source of inspiration, empowerment and encouragement for leading women across the continent, as they set a new course for a more inclusive, and equitable future. Among the inspiring speakers are female leaders in finance, technology, business, science, medicine, activism, sports, social entrepreneurship and media, including: Phuthi Mahanyele-Dabengwa, CEO of investment holding company Naspers in South Africa, and ranked number 42 on Fortune’s Most Powerful Women International list in 2020; Jane Karuku, CEO at East African Breweries, one of Kenya's biggest manufacturers; Beatrice Cornacchia, SVP of marketing for Mastercard in EEMEA; Dayo Ademola, MD for Branch International, a San Francisco-based fintech operating in Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania and India; among many others.  


Unlocking Trade for Women’s Empowerment and Sustainable Growth

World Trade Association

March 8, 2.30pm – 4pm (CET)

Stockholm / virtual

To register, click here

Organised by the World Trade Association, in cooperation with ITC and the Informal Working Group on Trade and Gender, this hybrid event will address the issue of women’s empowerment and gender equality in trade. Keynote speeches will be delivered by Ngozi Okongjo-lweala, director-general, WTO and Pamela Coke-Hamilton, executive director, International Trade Centre; while a panel will discuss equal opportunities in trade. Panellists include Jamila Belabidi, head of global supplier diversity, Procter & Gamble, Switzerland; Madhumita Sarkar Guha, founder and CEO, Luxe Living in India; Ambassador Federico Villegas, permanent representative, Argentina.


Stripe Celebrates Women in Tech

March 9, 2022, 12pm (GMT)

Ireland / virtual

To sign up, register here

In celebration of International Women’s Day, Stripe’s data science, engineering and product management teams have come together to host a small virtual event to recognise Women in Technology. In this session, you will hear stories from Stripe's growing female community, among them a data scientist, product manager and head of engineering, as well as a guest panellist from Trainline – Chief Technology Officer, Milena Nikolic. Listen as they discuss what it's like to be women in their field and how they #breakthebias. You can also join the conversation during the interactive Q&A and networking session.


Microsoft Leap Virtual International Women’s Day Event

March 8, 9.45am – 12.15pm

Nigeria / virtual

To register, click here

In partnership with the Africa Development Center, Microsoft Leap is celebrating International Women’s Day (IWD) from March 4 – 8 March and will host various events aimed at empowering and upskilling women for the tech ecosystem. Join Yemi Keri, CEO of Heckerbella and Onome Ofoman, Senior Software Engineer of Microsoft Nigeria as they discuss their journeys to becoming leading woman in technology; or join a panel of female engineers as they discuss the challenges, opportunities and journeys of women in engineering.


Break The Bias: Executive Panel for International Women’s Day

Scott Logic

March 8, 11.30am (GMT)

UK / virtual

To sign up, click here

Celebrate International Women’s Day with a distinguished panel of IT leaders discussing this year’s theme: ‘Break the Bias’. Join Scott Logic, a UK-based software consultancy, for a discussion led by the firm’s Chief Talent Officer, Myra Cooke, along with Boohoo’s CIO, Jo Graham; DWP’s Deputy Director and Head of Integration, Jacqui Leggetter; and Mei Clark, Head of Technology for Short Term Borrowing at NatWest Group. They will discuss the importance of representation at board level and how we can encourage more women into leadership positions; how to remove bias from our recruitment and promotion processes; the importance of D&I initiatives and educating our workforce about unconscious bias; and finally, the importance of starting this conversation at a much younger age, to inspire the next generation. You will even have a chance to put your questions to the panel.


Women in Tech Breaking Bias


March 10, 6.30pm (GMT)


To sign up, click here

A network of senior business leaders that offer time, knowledge and guidance to help progress diverse talent, BLIX is presenting its first event of the year – Women in Tech featuring a keynote talk and fireside chats with female senior leaders from Meta, Apple, Google, Peltarion and AWS and from across the world, including the Middle East, UK and the US. In line with this year’s IWD theme of #BreakTheBias, speakers will share key learnings from their career journeys, their rise to leadership positions in Big Tech, how to maintain visibility in a male-dominated industry, career progressive tangible actions, gender equality advocacy in the workplace, inclusive mindsets, and more. Speakers include Jane Egerton-Idehen, head of sales MENA at Meta; Elizabeth Chapman, product leader at Apple; Liliana Lindberg, AI Solutions Architect & Engineer at Peltarion; and Corie Hawkins, head of customer engineering UK at Google Cloud.


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