We recently took part in a “Gender Equality in Tourism” Panel at the Berlin Travel Show on March 8th , where we were introduced to a panel of interesting speakers with important ideas to be shared.
The presentations were summarized by Ryka Jean Francois, ITB CSR commissioner, by pointing out the various subjects addressed such as, destination management, Jordan innovative campaigns, huge on line business, big enterprises marketing, and university research, ranging from top policies to the grass roots. These are all necessary subjects to discuss because in all of them, women are so important. She addressed the need to compare private and public sector at all levels, so that we might be able to increase tourism industry's GDP immediately. But first of all, the need to start with more research on gender data.
To begin with, Lina Mazhar Annab, Ministrer of Jordan's Tourism, listed some of the achievements her country is aiming for, such as the strong ongoing battle for the 5th and 7th goals, about empowering and educating women. She underlined that more than half of the experiences are made by women and it is necessary for progress, potential and frameworks to organize the sector. She reminded the importance of rural activities and the importance of women in leaderships positions, that can be models. WIth a very nice finale of her speech.
Then Sarah Mattews, Head of Destination Marketing Asia Pacific-Tripadvisor, described her experience, as a woman in a big organization in Asia.
Jenna Qian, destination marketing CEO of Ctrip, China’s largest Online Travel Agency, gave a great description of their contributions to innovation and the importance of the needs of women either working or travelling with them. In CTrip Women represent over more than half of their 30,000 plus employee base. This rate far exceeds the average internet companies in China and Silicon Valley. Ctrip from day one, 18 years ago, have promoted gender equality. For example, they have special conditions, for example, for both pregnant women, workers and also clients travelers.
From a different point of view, Claudia Broezel said: "At Eberswalde University we started a research asking to leading position women: What really is empowering?. Which brought up some interesting answers.The inside of our last thesis on gender is based on a qualitative issue and on a conversation with leading position women. We found out that, for them, leading means team work. The focus is the relation and not hierarchy. Women take leading position to satisfy their visions and values, not for money or for power. The influence comes from family, role, economics, socialization. In any case, network is very important”
Then, Iaia Pedemonte in her speech suggested that it should be possible to calculate the grow of the GDP, after closing the gender gap in tourism.
Finally, Sandra Schmidt , Advisor Private Sector Cooperation/Sustainable Development through Tourism (GIZ) mentions a project implemented by GIZ on behalf of the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) in Morocco. Part of a special BMZ initiative to promote stability and development in North Africa and the Middle East by generating additional employment and higher incomes through sustainable tourism in rural regions.
She then points out the need of reliable and extensive data. This is why GIZ collaborates with UNWTO & UN Women for the second edition of the ‘Report on Women in Tourism (2018)who pointed out the need of reliable and extensive data, delivered the great news: "This is why GIZ collaborates with UNWTO & UN Women for the second edition of the ‘Report on Women in Tourism (2018)"..