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The agenda for Women in Dev has been shaped by a series of collective meetings and steering committee calls with women working at all levels in the sector.
As such, each session has been informed by the opinions and insights of hundreds of individuals from across the development space – and beyond. This conference has been created to foster honest, open dialogues around development issues, tackling key topics from a new angle – one that is bold, current and calls for alternative approaches and solutions to some of the most pressing challenges we face as a sector.
This conference is an opportunity to move beyond the constraints of the usual conversations,creating a space where individuals are encouraged to join the discussions and share their knowledge, experience and personal stories. This conference is above all, a platform for you to talk about the work you are doing, and your views on how we can move the sector forward.
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  • 8:00 AM
    Registration & Breakfast
  • 9:15 AM
    Opening Session
    Women in Dev is a women-led, women-focused international development conference which will be held at the County Hall, London, on March 5th, 2020. In the run up to International Women’s Day, we will bring together women from across the development arena and provide a platform for women-led conversations around some of the most significant challenges of our time, fostering an inclusive atmosphere in which to learn, grow, inspire and be inspired. Women in Dev aims to harness the power of collective knowledge and passion to ignite solutions-based conversations around pressing concerns including time poverty, institutional and systemic inequality, working in humanitarian settings and engaging unlikely allies. Women in Dev has been developed for women, by women and with women. Shaped by a steering committee of women leaders and engagement with networks and partners, our programme addresses both personal development and the future of the development sector. The conversations taking place will be women-led, raw, honest and shaped to provide an open dialogue around the most important issues facing the development community. The conference has been designed as a platform to enable and encourage women to tell their stories and share their passion and work in this field. Our aim is to create an inclusive environment with interactive networking and a diversity of experience and perspectives represented on all panels and in all discussions.
  • 9:45 AM
    What does feminist leadership in international development look like? (Plenary Session)
    The challenge for feminist leaders in our sector is not just promoting feminist values: it's also about how we can integrate those values in our work and implement values-driven strategies into how we approach key leadership challenges. Many feminist leaders in development are finding new, innovative and bold ways to drive change and place diversity, representation, and equality at the core of their management and leadership style. In finding a space as a female leader in which to support other women, challenge the status quo and drive institutional change, these women are aligning the way they lead with the values they stand for. Join us as we learn from these pioneering leaders and discuss strategies, the stories they can share, the challenges they have encountered and why our feminist values are so important to the way we lead and drive change in our sector.
  • 10:45 AM
    Coffee/tea and transfer to sessions
  • 11:15 AM
    How can we better understand the gender barriers to leadership in the sector?
    There has historically been a widespread lack of understanding of the complexities of gender and the extent to which gender inequality is embedded in our institutions. The failings can be seen in the gender ratios at the leadership level across the development sector. This session will share data and evidence to heighten our understanding of why women are not making it to the top of institutions. Our panelists will explore evidence of institutionally embedded obstacles, sexist stereotypes of how women lead and other factors which create an environment that is hostile to female leadership. We know, that the prejudices women face goes beyond gender, intersecting with class, race, cultural norms; ableism and heterosexism. Bringing together women who are leading the way in research, advocacy and action around gender and leadership, this is an opportunity to reshape mainstream discourse around gender to encompass women who face multifaceted challenges. Join us as we discuss the importance of accessibility and gender parity at an institutional level and what we as women can do to lead the charge for a more inclusive sector.
  • 12:15 PM
    Transfer to sessions
  • 12:30 PM
    Delivered by women and led by men- no universal health coverage without equality
    Universal Health Coverage (UHC) is defined as ensuring that everyone has access to the health services they need, of sufficient quality, without that access exposing the user to financial hardship. Gender inequality is a persistent barrier to the design and delivery of UHC: there is a global discrepancy between the reliance on women to provide health care services and the neglect of their own rights and work and health needs. A report by Women in Global Health, WHO and Global Health Workforce Network found that while women make up 70% of the health workforce, only 25% hold senior roles. These gaps in gender leadership are often driven by stereotypes, discrimination, and power imbalances, compounded with the fact that women are the majority of the world’s poor, subject to societal stigma regarding their bodies, and largely absent from political discussions to voice their health needs. These imbalances leave many women without access to essential SRHR and other health services and create a barrier to achieving UHC. This session will explore the steps we can take to ensure women’s rights and gender equality are central to discussions around UHC. At the same time, we will explore the importance of UHC for the protection of women’s rights, to ensure that female-dominated professions such as midwifery are respected and receive investment so that women globally can access accurate information about their sexual and reproductive health, and quality care in pregnancy and childbirth.
  • 1:30 PM
    Lunch (Provided)
  • 2:30 PM
    Pan-African dialogue on feminism and bodily autonomy (Plenary Session)
    Collective feminist movements have had a significant impact in mobilising female voices and advancing the rights of women and girls. Where feminist principles lie at the heart of solutions to issues central to women’s progress, including FGM/C, gendered violence and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, feminist thought and action must include the perspectives of women from across the African continent. This discussion is an opportunity to prise out feminist solutions, values and perspectives of women from across Africa as they discuss patriarchy and other power structures impacting the rights of women and girls. This session will be a platform for diverse female perspectives on feminism, gender equality and bodily autonomy.
  • 3:30 PM
    Transfer to sessions
  • 3:45 PM
    Activism across generations : a learning dialogue
    Once an activist, always an activist. As older generations of advocates and allies – guided by feminist ideologies – pass on the torch to rising generations, they must also pass on tools.. Passion for activism, alone, is not enough. Practical resources are necessary for young leaders to build off the existing evidence base and to mitigate the mental and emotional toll of burnout and activist anxiety. This session will facilitate a dialogue between girls and women to determine how we can work together to support young activists in development, bringing their fresh perspectives to the table now. How can those with experience in the space pass on tools for self-care and coping to younger generations? How can we encourage the rising generation, and the generation behind them, to stay engaged in the work without drowning in it? Featuring a panel of women, with varying levels of experience in life and development, this discussion is an opportunity to share learnings and support intergenerational dialogue in the development community.
  • 4:45 PM
    Coffee/tea and transfer to sessions
  • 5:15 PM
    How can we deliver greater equity, transparency and accountability within our sector? (Plenary Session)
    In the past decade, the international development sector has been shaken by accusations of abuse, mismanagement and exploitation. Many international non-governmental organizations (INGOs) have witnessed major governance breakdowns and in many cases demonstrated a failure to adequately address abuse. Amidst the unrest, these revelations have opened the floodgates for us to look within our sector and question the negative legacies we have inherited, and come up with solutions to address the structures and systems that underpin the way the sector works. Greater introspection reveals the need for concrete solutions to these issues, including strong accountability mechanisms to demonstrate responsiveness to discrimination, improved governance and management structures, and evolved methods of building and delivering partnerships and programmes. This session will discuss approaches to cultural reform that overcome the inherent bias of many organisational processes. We will explore the measures we can take to become more diverse and inclusive, and how institutional transformation will bring greater equity, transparency and accountability within the development sector.
  • 6:15 PM
  • 6:30 PM
    Reception: Hubdot Piazza
    Hub Dot Piazza: What's your story? Join us for an evening of inspiring, authentic, human stories. By embracing the Hub Dot way of connecting, the audience becomes leveled and job titles are dispelled. We help people to find their mentors, partners, investors, their protégé’s and their clients. We create an atmosphere of knowledge exchange that transcends seniority or background. We want to find out how you are making an impact in the world of development. So... what's your story?
  • 8:00 AM
    Registration & Breakfast
  • 10:45 AM
    Coffee/tea and transfer to sessions
  • 11:15 AM
    How can we strengthen our dialogue with donors to ensure impactful investments in women?
    Public-Private-Partnerships have become a mainstream development model for many years. Private sector partners stand alongside governments and international organizations as significant funders of development initiatives. Building an understanding between donors, governments and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) about what constitutes impactful investment in gender and women’s rights initiatives continue to pose significant challenges. Calls from private sector funders for NGOs to demonstrate the ‘return on investment’ can appear at odds with the rights-based approach that underpins so much of the work in the development sector. There is also the added dimension of short-term funding cycles, when gender initiatives that address attitudes and behaviours towards women can take years to show demonstrable impact. With the momentum of the feminist movements across sectors and geographies, and the growing investment in gender equality initiatives, how do we bridge the gap between these worlds to reconcile approaches and build better relationships? By opening discussions around their priorities, approaches and progress indicators, we will explore what effective public private partnerships look like, how the relationships between these partners can deliver for both sides, and how we can harness private sector financing to advance women’s entrepreneurism, and deliver that return investors seek.
  • 12:15 PM
    Transfer to sessions
  • 12:30 PM
    How are Sustainable Peace and Gender Equality Intertwined?
    Individuals who are working in conflict situations, growing up in conflict, or fleeing conflict, often experience social stigma, rejection and the risk of exploitation. The widespread psychological impact of violence impacts certain groups in different ways, and gendered stigma in conflict situations has a deep impact on women’s physical and psychological integrity. Given the social challenges which are pertinently experienced in fragile settings, the need for a consideration for inclusivity, human rights, and social and cultural transformation in peacebuilding is central to enabling people to rebuild their lives and communities. This session will examine the importance of incorporating an understanding of gender and human rights in discussions around conflict and peacebuilding. How can the unique set of challenges faced by women be thoroughly addressed in the peace process? What educational elements need to be included in peacebuilding to ensure communities can learn more about each other’s experiences and support one another?
  • 1:30 PM
    Lunch (Provided)
  • 3:45 PM
    Unpacking the unique perspectives of women of colour working in international development
    The objective of this session is to foster discussions around the issues surrounding women of colour working within international development spaces. When discussing women in development, the definition of feminism is often centered around white feminist concepts in the absence of an intersectional lens on women’s issues. This session will centre the stories of women of colour in the broader context of the Women in Dev dialogues.
  • 8:00 AM
    Registration & Breakfast
  • 11:00 AM
    Storytelling Workshop
    Storytelling training provides you with the strategies and tools needed to develop effective ways to engage with audiences and connecting conversations that are authentic and real, and most importantly help advance your personal or organisational objectives. This interactive session, will focus on helping you craft the meaningful messages and inspiring stories that help ‘turn the lights on’ for the variety of stakeholders you work with. Participants hone their skills through live exercises, videos and review with peers so they can see the results and refer back to what they did in the session.
  • 1:30 PM
    Lunch (provided)
  • 3:45 PM
    Managing burnout Workshop
    Those working in high-stress environments can face the risk of burnout and compassion fatigue. By checking-in with our current go-to strategies for dealing with stress, difficulty and day-to-day anxiety, we can consider what habits we'd like to change (or adopt) in order to ensure our mental health and wellbeing remain a priority, despite chaotic and pressured working environments. This rapid-change workshop hands over a simple tools that enable you to do just that. Ones that you can use over and over again throughout your career, whenever you feel that an unwanted coping strategy has emerged. Whether it’s a personal or professional habit you wish to address or adopt, you needn’t share this with Shahroo - or indeed anyone else during the workshop. There is no role-play, moving around or 'team- building' exercises. All you need to bring is a notebook and pen, as well as the desire to create, change or diversify the habits that help you cope day to day.
  • 4:45 PM
    Coffee/tea and transfer to sessions