Women in travel meetup – Initiative to launch at ATM

Women in travel meetup – Initiative to launch at ATM

Monday 25 April 2016, 16.30 to 18.00, Showcase Theatre

The Women in Travel Meetup launched at ATM sister event World Travel Market in London in 2014. It expanded in 2015 to a full afternoon of debates, one to one mentoring and networking and had a combined audience of 200 (mostly) women from 31 nationalities.

And now we’re bringing it to Dubai. But why now?

According to recent research commissioned by the WTTC Tourism directly contributes 2.7% of total GDP, 3.2% of direct employment and 4.6% of total visitor exports in the Middle East.

Women and gender related issues are an increasingly discussed topic in the Middle East and North Africa region and recently published research such as ‘Arab Women – Leadership Outlook (2009-2011)’ by advisory firm PwC offers a snapshot of the thoughts and views of a dynamic, intellectual and enthusiastic group of women in the Arab world. In the report it is being said that women are slowly but substantially improving their position in Arab societies with female entrepreneurship on a remarkable rise.

Tourism too, as an economic sector, provides great opportunity for women in the Middle East.

Already in 2011, the then Minister of Tourism for Jordan, Dr Haifa Abi Ghazaleh spoke in Berlin about the opportunities travel and tourism offers to women. She stressed that while challenges continue to exist, tourism as an industry is too important to afford overlooking the female pool of talent and illustrated the ‘Jordanian initiative to open the doors for women in tourism jobs’, comprising of several streams, including changing the perception of the industry, field trips, open days, scholarship, mentoring, personal development skills and many others.

A plethora of other projects have also been initiated in the last few years, for example EcoWin a non-governmental organisation that works to improve conditions for the integration of women in business and employment in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia, cooperated with TUI travel group on strengthening women’s position in the tourism sector.

With the ATM Women in Travel Meetup 2016 we hope to contribute to opening up the travel and tourism sector to women in the Middle East.

The panel discussion will look at the increasing role played by women both as travel consumers and as travel professionals, the opportunities existing for women in tourism employment or as travel entrepreneurs and the opportunities for business in tapping into this pool of talent. In addition the panel will also make reference to women as travelers and how regional destinations may attract the increasing numbers of women to the area on business and leisure.

Following the debate, there will be an opportunity to stay on to continue the discussion informally with attendees and speakers.

ATM Women in Travel meetup will provide the ideal platform for this discussion and help women professionals, entrepreneurs and business identify opportunities as well as possible challenges.

Join us to find out how women are taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the sector and to share insights, inspiration and practical tips!

Tagged .

Alessandra is founder of social enterprise Women in Travel CIC which she launched in January 2017 to provide communities in key regions (for example UK, Middle East, Africa and Latin America) with a sustainable livelihood by enabling women to become economically independent through entrepreneurship and a thriving career in the travel and tourism industry. Alessandra is also Chief Mentor & Consultant at Everyday Mentor, where she provides mentoring, coaching and consulting services to a range of clients in the commercial and public sector. Alessandra also collaborates with a number of Universities, including Hertfordshire, Normandy and Surrey. Alessandra is passionate about gender in tourism and has written and spoken extensively on the subject over the last 12 years, including at the United Nations World Tourism Day. She is well known as co-founder of Shine People and Places – a boutique outfit dedicate to supporting women in the workplace - and The Shine Awards for Women Achievements in Travel Tourism Hospitality and Events, which she ran between 2004 and 2010 before Sector Skills Council People 1st took them over. Prior to Shine Alessandra worked at KPMG, where she built the Travel & Tourism division, and the World Travel and Tourism Council. Alessandra has an executive MBA from the University of Ediburgh/Grande Ecole Pons combined; she is a qualified coach/mentor for performance in the workplace and she is a member of several industry bodies including AWTE and the UK Tourism Society.

Leave a Comment

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked *