Past Events 

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  • 19 Apr 2018 15:31 | Anonymous


    EU Luncheon Debate

    April 11th, 2018

    WIL's EU Luncheon debate at the EU Parliament, Brussels, 11th April 2018

    Please see here for the long report of the event.
    Please see here for more pictures.
    Want to share your feedbacks? Answer this survey!

    Wednesday the 11th of April saw the WIL Network come together to meet and discuss ‘The New Face of Digital Transformation: Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things and Blockchain’ with a focus on how to make users understand and remain comfortable during the transition induced by these cutting-edge innovations, that will be transforming health care, transportation, education and much more.

    50 WTP participants, WIL members, Alumni and Guests assembled at the European Parliament in Brussels, where we were hosted by MEP and fellow Board Member Pervenche Berès for a Luncheon Debate and had the opportunity to hear a high-level panel:

    • Pinuccia Contino, Head of the Unit "Product Safety and Rapid Alert System”, Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers at the European Commission
    • Paulina Dejmek-Hack, Member of Cabinet, Financial Advisor of the President of the European Commission, J-C. Juncker
    • Benjamin Docquir, Partner at Osborne Clarke
    • Antonietta Mastroianni, Senior Vice President IT Development at TDC Group
    • Marina Niforos, President and CEO at Logos Global Advisors and Advisor to IFC/World Bank Group

    The first part of our event, ‘Reimagining the Art of the Possible’, invited the audience to stretch their minds and envision new possibilities, by clarifying the concepts of AI, IoT and Blockchain, while revealing their transformative power through concrete examples of the actual applications and solutions of each of these technologies but also of combining them. 

    From left to right: Marina Niforos, Antonietta Mastroianni and Benjamin Docquir.

    The second part of the debate focused on the ‘Role of public authorities and of the EU’ in accelerating the development of these new technologies and overcoming the related challenges.

    From left to right: Paulina Dejmek-Hack and Pinuccia Contino 

    Carrying on tradition, Dalila Rahmouni, Political Advisor in Digital & Internet Governance, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and participant to the 4th edition of our Women Talent Pool concluded the Luncheon debate with a wrap up of the discussion.

    From left to ri
    ght: wrap up of the session by Dalila Rahmouni, Q&A session and networking time

    This event was a great example of the WIL network coming together to understand and clarify crucial concepts and societal issues. 

    We look forward to welcoming you all to our upcoming events!

  • 29 Mar 2018 17:38 | Anonymous

    “It is crucial for women’s networks to bridge across sectors and countries to connect and promote women leaders”, said Beatrice Delmas-Linel, WIL Board Member and Managing Partner at Osborne Clarke, during a networking reception organised by WIL Europe and hosted at Osborne Clarke in Paris on the 26th of March.

    WIL President Thaima Samman welcomes GlobalWIN Vice Chair Stephanie Peters and Femmes et Diplomatie President Pauline Carmona, along with the entire congregation.

    GlobalWIN, a bipartisan NGO based in Washington DC, provides a dynamic forum for female leaders to grow personally and professionally, while contributing to key policy debates. It was our great pleasure to welcome their delegation of Congressional Staff Members, and representatives of their Board of Directors and corporate sponsors and to hear about their visit to Paris.

    Similarly, Femmes et Diplomatie is an association focussed on the advancements and interests of women by improving the working conditions of all agents of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The association is based in Paris and we were happy to welcome President Pauline Carmona, Associate Director Asia and Oceania at the French MEAE whom stated during her words that of the objectives of Femmes et Diplomatie is “to promote role models and show that it is possible to have a balanced work life while still reaching tier 1 positions’.

    Members of WIL Europe and GlobalWIN including Board Member Beatrice Delmas-Linel

    WIL Board Members Marina Niforos and Nida Januskis were also present at the networking afternoon with WIL's President Thaima Samman reiterating the importance of putting words into action and how this meeting was a great example of transatlantic female cooperation.

    The afternoon was a great opportunity to meet our US counterparts and have insightful discussions as we continue working together on the promotion of women across continents.

    Thank you to our friends at GlobalWIN and Femmes et Diplomatie for attending this afternoon, we look forward to seeing you soon for another event together. And many thanks to Osborne Clarke for hosting the event and for all your initiatives to advance women leadership!

    More pictures of the event are available here.

  • 22 Mar 2018 16:04 | Anonymous


    Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Digitial Economy and Society with the participants 
    of the 4th edition of our Women Talent Pool programme

    To access the full report click here. 
    The pictures of the event are available here.
    To read the full speech of Commissioner Gabriel, click here.

    The future of Europe is digital, and women cannot be left outwere among the words of Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, who joined us for the launch of the 4th Edition of our Women Talent Pool (WTP) programme and met with nearly 90 WIL members and guests. Among them were the 46 selected talents that she will accompany as Godmother of this edition throughout the 18-month programme.

    The kick-off event began with the welcoming remarks of WIL’s President, Thaima Samman, Partner, SAMMAN Law and Corporate Affairs and Line Pélissier, Group Diversity Director at Orange, followed by the testimonies of our WTP Alumni Beata Dobrowolska, Racha Abu El Ata and Cristina Hoffmann Muñoz-Seca, delivered during a lively panel session moderated by WIL Board Member Marina Niforos, President and CEO of Logos Global Advisor.

    From Left to Right: Christine Albanel, Thaima Samman, and Bénédicte Javelot

    The Commissioner was warmly welcomed by Christine Albanel, Former French Minister for Culture and Communication, Senior Executive Vice-President, Corporate Social Responsibility, Diversity, Partnerships & Philanthropy at Orange and Bénédicte Javelot, Chief Strategy Officer at Orange, who both took this opportunity to underline Orange’s positive initiatives in the promotion of women in the digital sector.   

    During her Keynote speech, Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, introduced the initiatives of the European Commission with regards to the digitalisation of Europe and the promotion of women in the digital sector

    Women’s empowerment is not only one of my priorities, but also, and more importantly it is a matter that touches to the progress and prosperity of our modern societies.

    I am honoured to have been named Godmother of the Women Talent Pool programme. This initiative has the power to get talented women professionals together and give them the tools to step in the highest responsibilities.  


    Putting words into action, the WTP participants were then divided into small groups were divided into small groups and had the opportunity to meet and network with 13 WIL senior level members: Béatrice Delmas-Linel, Emanuela Palazzani, Catherine Ladousse, Sylviane Toporkoff, Enrica Acuto Jacobacci, Wassila Zitoune-Dumontet, Serena La Torre, Claire Bouchenard, Viktorija Smatko-Abaza, Milena Harito, Jennifer Schenker, Christine Marlet and Anne Houtman.

    From Left to Right: Axele Lofficial, Marina Niforos, Laurent Derivery

    During the day, the participants were also offered three engaging trainings, the first on Emotional Intelligence, held by Axele Lofficial, Executive Coach and Manager of the Key Account Development Team at BPI Group, the second on the importance of networking for leaders held by Marina Niforos, President and CEO at Logos Global Advisors, and the third on decision biases and stereotypes held by Laurent Derivery, President at Valeurs & Development.

    Thank you to all participants and partners! We are looking forward to seeing you at our upcoming events!

  • 16 Mar 2018 15:03 | Anonymous

    The 8th of March 2018 marks an important day for all WIL members and WTP Participants alike. International Women’s Day is not only a day to celebrate and praise women but also a day to remind us to remain motivated and unite as we #PressforProgress.

    This year, WTP Participants and Alumni came together in two major cities, Brussels and Paris to reconnect, network and celebrate the day.

    Afterwork Cocktail at LinkedIn in Paris

    Myriam El Ouni, WTP Alumni welcoming participants and board members to our first afterwork of the year

    In Paris, WIL partnered with LinkedIn France, allowing both alumni and new participants to the 4th Edition of our Women Talent Programme to enjoy an Afterwork Cocktail in their Headquarters. Our President Thaima Samman and Board members Nathalie Wright and Béatrice Delmas-Linel also joined the event and shared some insights on the importance of putting words into action by continuing the drive to ensure the promotion of women.

    All in all, this reunion provided a great opportunity to the participants get to know one another and network before the Kick Off Event of the 4th Edition of our WTP programme in Paris on the 15th of March 2018.

    Thank you, Myriam El Ouni, Global Account Manager at LinkedIn France for making this event happen and we look forward for further cooperation with LinkedIn!

    Afterwork in Brussels

    Over in Brussels, WTP participants and Alumni enjoyed two activities to commemorate International Women’s Day. Firstly, WTP Participant Ioana Banach invited them to join other organisations of around 150 participants, including the European Women’s Lobby for a photo op. The picture below, as you can see show them forming the shape of the International Women’s Day logo and was a great way to get organisations together to honour the day! After the photo op, WTP participants and alumni enjoyed a dinner together, sharing their previous involvement and future expectations of WIL’s Women Talent Pool programme and network.

    Thanks again to both Myriam El Ouni of LinkedIn France and Ioana Banach of the Green European Foundation for their help in the organisation of the events. We hope those whom attended enjoyed the first Afterwork of the year and we look to seeing you all again soon! Keep a look out on our website and in your e-mails for the next local Afterworks in your city.

    More pictures of the event are available here.

  • 15 Feb 2018 12:47 | Anonymous

    More than 25 WIL members and guests were given the opportunity to meet and exchange over a one-day event, organised with Softlab, and particularly rich in cultural discoveries and insightful discussions on the topic of women leadership.

    Following the success of a first meeting held in November 2016 at the Italian Senate's Committee on Foreign Affairs, WIL Europe organised a second encounter with its Vice-Chairman Paolo Corsini, who shared some insights on the representation of women in the public and private sectors and on the role of gender equality in ensuring economic growth. 

    Softlab's President Sargis Ghazaryan stressed the importance for Softlab to experiment and implement gender inclusive best practices, while WIL Board Member Emanuela Palazzani reminded the audience of WIL Europe's role in promoting the advancement of women across Europe: 

    WIL Europe's "W" stands for "Women" but also for "Winners". 
    Winners never quit and quitters never win (Vince Lombardi) and we are ready to take up the challenge of women's leadership.

    (left picture, form left to right : President Sargis Ghazaryan, WIL Board Member Emanuela Palazzani, Senator Paolo Corsini)

    The meeting was preceded by a networking lunch and a visit of the exhibition "Trajan. Building the Empire, Creating Europe" presented, for WIL members and guests, by the Curator of the exhibition and Softlab technological Partner.


    The exhibition, hosted in the famous Mercati di Traiano at the heart of the ancient city, allowed the participants to reflect on the relationship between the Roman Empire and current Europe but also stressed the strong power of women surrounding the Emperor, seen as forerunners of U.S. First Ladies. 



    It was also a great example of the role of technology in delivering inspiring experiences, as the participants discovered the many interactive and visual experiences developed by Softlabtechnological Partner of the exhibition.

    For more pictures, see our gallery here. 

  • 11 Jan 2018 12:16 | Anonymous

    WIL President Thaima Samman speaking about the importance of women’s networks and role models at a dinner organized in Paris by the association ‘Femmes et Diplomatie’ (Women and Diplomacy) representing women in the French Minister of Foreign Affairs.  

    Modern diplomacy and international relations can only gain from including the views and perspectives of women and the WIL is proud to have had the opportunity to share its expertise and best practices.

    A very inspiring moment for all the attendees ! 

  • 13 Dec 2017 16:21 | Anonymous

    On December 5th, WIL Board Members had the pleasure to meet with the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel, who will do us the great honor of becoming the Patron of the 4th edition of our Woman Talent Pool programme

    Our Board members discussed future cooperation with the EU Commissioner on how to tap into female talent pool and promote gender equality and female leadership in the digital world. 

    Keep an eye out for more information coming soon !

  • 08 Dec 2017 15:18 | Anonymous

    To access the full report click here. 
    The pictures of the event are available here.

    Executive Summary

    “There are amazing women everywhere – those that can’t see them need to get better glasses!”, were among the words of the EU Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, at EU Breakfast Debate that took place at the European Parliament,  on Tuesday 5 December.  The event was organized by European Network for Women in Leadership (WIL Europe), and moderated by Thaima Samman, WIL President. 

    Proving that the Commissioner is right, the European Network for Women in Leadership gathered more than 60 leading professional women to this event, where they had the chance to learn firsthand about EU competition policies and to discuss, in an intimate and friendly atmosphere, with one of the most influential female leaders.

    The event began with warm welcome delivered by Thaima Samman, WIL’s president and was followed by introductory words of Laura Batchelor, Director of Fipra, sponsor of the event and by Pervenche Berès, MEP and the hostess of our debate.

    From left to right: Margrethe Vestager, EU Commissioner for Competition ; Thaima Samman, Partner, SAMMAN Law and Corporate Affairs & WIL President ; Laura Batchelor, Director of Fipra International

    Commissioner Vestager then delivered a powerful and inspiring speeh both on "Women Leadership" and on "Fair Competition" and also took the time to discuss with the participants in person. 

    “I am not powerful, I exercise power.” 

    "We need to change the system to build the path in leadership for the next generations, rather than for individual successful women only."

    “Everyone, however rich or powerful, has to play by the rules.” 

    Those words were among the key messages shared by the Commissioner to the participants, who left ready to “exercise power” at every level ! 

  • 02 Oct 2017 18:44 | Anonymous

    Following WIL Breakfast Debate at the European Parliament with Michel Barnier, the EU’s Chief Negotiator for Brexit, some of the participants and alumni of our Women Talent Pool programme* joined WIL Board members at the occasion of a lunch meeting to discuss about career development issues and future developments of our Women Talent Pool program.

    * WIL Women Talent Pool programme is a unique cross-sectoral leadership programme that aims to train and promote a new generation of women leaders in Europe.

    We were happy to welcome to the lunch :

    -          Raluca Anghel, Head of Office, European Parliament (WTP)
    -          Virginie Battu-Henriksson, Press Officer, Foreign Affairs and Security & Defense, Council of the European Union (Alumni, 2nd edition)
    -          Debbie Marks, General Counsel, Orange (WTP)
    -          Rita Motta, Counsel, Latham & Watkins LLP (Alumni, 2nd edition)
    -          Audrey Scozzaro, Senior Manager, Government Manager Europe, Qualcomm (WTP)
    -          Sigrid Windmolders, Corporate External Legal Affairs Attorney Microsoft Belgium & Luxembourg (WTP)

         From left to right: Brigitte Dumont, Senta Marenz, Marion Ducasse, Debbie Marks, Sigrid Windmolders, Virginie Battu-Henriksson, Thaima Samman, Emanuela Palazzani, Audrey Scozzaro

    To start with, Thaima Samman emphasized the great role of WIL in connecting senior level members with less experienced emerging talents, while our Board members provided valuable insights based on their own professional and life experiences, in particular on the topic of work-life balance.

    “You bring to us as much as we bring to you”,
    Thaima Samman, 
    Partner, SAMMAN Law and Corporate Affairs & WIL President.

    “Never feel guilty,
    always invest your energy in something else”

    Béatrice Delmas-Linel, Managing Partner, Osborne Clarke France

    From left to right: Audrey Scozzaro, Béatrice Delmas-Linel, Katherine Corich, Marina Niforos

    In turn, the participants of our WTP programme shared some feedbacks about their experience of the WTP program. In particular, they valued the skills they are able to  develop during WIL training and workshop sessions and the opportunity they are given to attend events involving high-level speakers and attendees, and not only addressing women issues but all leadership related issue too.

    From left to right: Sigrid Windmolders, Virginie Battu-Henriksson, Thaima Samman

    “WIL is about having big debates,
    we do not only discuss women issues and I really appreciate it.”, 
    Virginie Battu-Henriksson, Press Officer, Foreign Affairs and Security & Defense, Council of the European Union

    “The network is so absolutely fantastically connected
    to so many talented individuals.”,

    Sigrid Windmolders, Corporate External Legal Affairs Attorney Microsoft Belgium & Luxembourg

    For more pictures of the event, please click here

  • 02 Oct 2017 12:55 | Anonymous

    While the fourth cycle of the Brexit negotiations just started, following intensive discussions between its main protagonists, around 60 WIL members and guests were privileged to meet and discuss with Michel Barnier, the EU’s Chief Negotiator for Brexit.

    To access the full report click here.
    The pictures of the event are available here.

    Executive Summary : 

                           Speech by Michel Barnier, the EU’s Chief Negotiator for Brexit - European Parliament, Brussels

    The future of Europe is more important than Brexit, Michel Barnier

    The meeting, who took place at the European Parliament in Brussels on the 26th of September 2017, gave rise to an exceptional exchange of views, as Mr. Barnier shared insights on Brexit negotiations and its latest developments, while WIL members and guests coming from across Europe and representing various organizations, showcased how Brexit may potentially influence the sectors for which they are responsible.

    In particular, Michel Barnier stressed the importance of conducting negotiations on an objective and legal basis, without harming EU citizens and the single market. He also presented his views about the future of Europe: “the negotiations should be the opportunity to explain why we are together, and how being part of the EU allows us to be respected, to defend our cultural and social model, our identity while preserving our national identities."

    Intervention by Anne Houtman, Lecturer at Sciences Po Paris, 
    former Director for General Policy at DG Energy of the European Commission (second on the right)

    Following the debate with Mr. Barnier, the discussion on Brexit and its impacts on Europe continued with Anne Houtman, Lecturer at Sciences Po Paris, former Director for General Policy at DG Energy of the European Commission, who remarked that there was a lot of confusion, deliberately or not, around the notions of ‘sovereignty’ and of 'diversity', which deserved a better debate. The expression 'shared sovereignty' suggesting a loss of it was wrong, e.g. the decisions of the United Kingdom to join the EU, to delegate some competences to the EU or to leave it were fully sovereign decisions. The gains from exchanging - goods or ideas - within the EU are all the more important due to the diversity of its Member States, and the UK is different. In addition, Anne Houtman called for better communication with those EU citizens who are far away from 'the center' and more debates with Eurosceptics.

    Several other interesting positions and exchange of views took place among our participants, which you will find in the longer version of the report. To access, please click here. 

    Interventions by Katherine Corich (on the left), Founder and Chair of Sysdoc
    Isabella Lenarduzzi (on the right), Owner of JUMP

    Following the debate, the participants continued the discussions over a breakfast buffet, which was also a great opportunity to network and meet new WIL members and guests.

    Networking time - European Parliament, Brussels
    September 26th, 2017

    For more photos from the event, please click here.

    The WIL would like to thank you for your proactive participation and is already looking forward to seeing you at our next EU Breakfast Debate with the European Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager on 5 December 2017 (to register, please click here).

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