200 female Transport Experts attend first Conference ever to focus on mobilizing Women in Transport
“This is the first transport conference I ever attended, where only women were on the panel.” was a phrase often heard at the Women Mobilize Women Conference on May 22nd 2018 prior to the International Transport Forum Summit 2018. Many remarked on what they had not seen in the transport scene before: All panelists and moderators were female. „This is the most diverse room I’ve seen in a long time.” said Mary Crass, Head of Institutional Relations and Summit of the International Transport Forum, during her welcome address and therewith highlighted that the audience was mostly female but also highly diverse with 200 participants from more than 42 countries.
The conference was organized by the Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative (TUMI), an initiative launched by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to support transport experts in leveraging sustainable urban transport projects. The conferences goal was to start a long overdue discussion about the role and potential of women in transforming urban mobility and to highlight gender sensitive transport planning. Dr. Tania Rödiger-Vorwerk, Deputy Director General of the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) put it like this: "When women plan transport, transport is planned for all."
Mobility experts such as Robin Chase, founder of ZipCar, or Julie Anne Genter, Minister of Women and Associate Minister of Transport and Health of New Zealand, highlighted the importance of the conference in their speeches. More than 200 attending participants in Leipzig and another 4000 spectators via livestream listened to the very personal experiences and work results of the numerous transport experts in promoting sustainable urban mobility. Among them were Esenam Nyador, Miss Taxi Ghana, Ghana's first female taxi driver, or Sofia Salek de Braun, Solution Director for Traffic Safety at the PTV Group, who with her very personal loss impressively raised awareness for the importance of Road Safety.
The Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative wants to follow up the conference with the establishment of an international women's transport network and movement. Support the Women Mobilize Women Movement with the Hashtag #equalpanel.