Dr Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry, President of the World Maritime University (WMU) spoke during the European Shipping Week (ESW) with a keynote address on Gender diversity: Better for People, Better for the Profession, Better for the Industry.
During the ESW, February 17-21, Dr Doumbia-Henry highlighted that in the last 27 years the percentage of women seafarers has remained low as 1-2%, noting the importance of education. She also talked about the significant barriers facing women entering the shipping industry, including institutional arrangements, tax systems, social justice issues such as lower and unequal pay, violence and harassment in the workplace, a weak voice and low representation of women.
Also, during her speech, Dr Doumbia-Henry focused on the indispensable nature of the maritime industry to the global trade, the importance of sustainable development, the rapid advancement of technology, the increased need for partnership and cooperation as well as the importance of leadership for the future they want.
Overal, the WMU is fully committed to supporting gender equality, the Goal 5 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The University recorded female student representation at 3% in 1983. Today, this number has significantly improved to 34% (one third) in 2019 in the Malmö-based MSc programme.
President Doumbia-Henry noted that
To healthy and clean oceans; To responsible stewardship of the seas and a sustainable and productive industry; To ethical and socially responsible ship ownership and operations; To an optimistic, collaborative and sustainable future for the maritime and ocean industry.
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