WIL’s first mission is to promote, support and advance the economic and societal interests and professional development of senior-level women. Thus, it provides an excellent stage, through its events, newsletter and website, for promoting their views and expertise on core topics such as finance, entrepreneurship, competitiveness, environment, enabling technologies or reaching gender balance in different areas of the society. 

The ultimate objective is to promote gender equality and the advancement of women in Europe. In that aim, WIL is also working on finding ways to support the advancement of women to top leadership roles through different channels. 

WIL’s Concern 

In Europe, according to 20-first's Womenomics 101 Survey, out of the 85 companies in the Fortune 101 list who offered information on their gender policies, only 27 have women in their executive committees. Only 20.3% of businesses started with venture capital in Europe belong to female entrepreneurs. In 2009, only 35% of all MEPs in the European Parliament were women, while in 2008, in national parliaments across the European Union, slightly less than one in four members of parliament were women (24%). Sweden, the Netherlands and Finland are the only EU countries with more than 40% women in Parliament. 

From 1958 to 2009, 142 different individuals have taken up positions as European Commissioners but just 19 of these (13%) were women. 

Thaima Samman, President of WIL
"In a society where women make up to 60% of higher-education graduates, we need to work towards actively empowering women, by learning from one another and investing in each other."

In a society where women represent up to 60% of higher-education graduates, we need to work towards reducing inequalities and actively empower women. The WIL initiative is committed to encouraging more women to take on high-level responsibilities, to support entrepreneurial initiatives and to help prepare future women leaders enhance their skills throughout the Women Talent Pool Program. 

Other Topics of Interest 

  • Supporting female entrepreneurship and access to capital 
  • Encouraging women to broaden the spectrum of possible careers and to tackle sectors they are not involved in today, including, but not only, sciences and technology 
  • Fostering women's employability through skills training and lifelong learning 

© European Network for Women in Leadership 2017

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