Events to celebrate women in leadership
23 October 2018
A series of free events exploring the role of women in driving forward innovation and growth in business will be hosted by Leeds Beckett University across West Yorkshire as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week.
The Women in Leadership events take place at Leeds Beckett’s University Business Centres in Halifax, Wakefield and Leeds on Monday 12 – Wednesday 14 November.
The events are supported and sponsored by AD:VENTURE and mark the closing of this year’s annual Innovation Network series, delivered in partnership between Leeds Beckett, the Yorkshire Post, Lupton Fawcett LLP, WGN Accountants, Yorkshire Bank and Exa Networks.
Speakers include: Dorothy Monekosso, Professor of Computer Science at Leeds Beckett; Eve Roodhouse, Chief Executive Economic Development at Leeds City Council; Merran McRae, Chief Executive of Wakefield Council; Rachel Engwell, Partner at Grant Thornton; Griselda Togobo, Owner and Managing Director of Forward Ladies; and Ellie MacDonald, Founder of PR, marketing and communications firm MacComms.
Professor Dorothy Monekosso said: “I studied engineering at university because I was passionate about the subject and about building things. After a decade in industry, I joined academia to pursue research. There is a serious issue with retention of female engineers compared to their male counterparts.
“We have witnessed in the past two decades an exponential growth of Artificial Intelligence in healthcare innovation. It is important that women are part of this revolution. I am currently collaborating with universities across the north of England on the Inclusion Matters project where we aim to boost the participation of under-represented groups in engineering and physical sciences.”
Eve Roodhouse said: “These events are a great opportunity to encourage more women into leadership, especially as they are being delivered in Global Entrepreneurship Week where we celebrate innovators and job creators launching start-ups that bring ideas to life and drive economic growth.
“It’s vital that women feel confident to explore their options, both within a workplace, or starting up their own business, and these Innovation Network events will pave the way for aspirational women to access peer learning, and programmes like AD:VENTURE, designed to boost the growth of new businesses across the region.”
Women in Leadership takes place at Piece Mill in Halifax on Monday 12 November, at 9 – 11am; at the ASIC building, Wakefield College, on Tuesday 13 November from 8.30 – 10.30am; and in the Parkinson Suite, No1 Leeds, Wellington Street, on Wednesday 14 November from 8.30 – 10.30am.
Each location is the home of a Leeds Beckett University Business Centre, providing office space, meeting facilities and a programme of business support to early stage businesses who are looking to grow.
Katie Rigarlsford, University Business Centre and Regional Business Development Manager at Leeds Beckett, added: “From 2007 to 2017, women’s board representation in FTSE 100 companies raised from 11 per cent to 28 per cent. Since the 2008 downturn, 58 per cent of the newly self-employed have been female. So why do women account for just 17 per cent of business owners?
“Men are twice as likely to be entrepreneurially active as women and apparently 10 per cent of the female population are thinking about starting up a business. So I am interested in hearing speakers’ stories to help us better understand the issues and to start thinking about what else Leeds Beckett University can do to support women in entrepreneurship.”
AD:VENTURE is a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) project, bringing together universities, councils and private sector partners across the Leeds City Region to provide expert support to young businesses with an ambition to grow. For more information please click here.