WINS Gender Champions in Nuclear Security Programme

WINS is committed to gender parity in relation to the hiring, promotion and recognition of women in the field of nuclear security. We also seek to ensure gender mainstreaming, whose goal is to increase the representation of women as subject matter experts, trainers and leaders in nuclear security at the programme level.

Our commitment is in line with international research, which has consistently found that a diverse and inclusive workforce is better for everyone:  shareholders, stakeholders and society in general. Just one example is a study conducted by Mckinsey that reaffirmed “the global relevance of the link between diversity—defined as a greater proportion of women and a more mixed ethnic and cultural composition in the leadership of large companies—and company financial outperformance.”

WINS Gender Champions in Nuclear Security Programme

Addressing Imbalances

Clearly, Nuclear Security is an important international undertaking. Efforts to protect and secure nuclear and other radioactive material to prevent theft and misuse as well as to protect material and facilities from sabotage require dedicated and knowledgeable professionals from diverse backgrounds.

Unfortunately, women are under-represented in the field. In fact, WINS currently assesses the level of women’s participation in nuclear security at around 20%. This figure is consistent with the level of female participation in the WINS Academy as well as with the number of certified nuclear security professionals who have graduated from WINS Programmes.

Addressing Imbalances

WINS Initiatives

Thanks to financial support from the Government of Norway and the Government of Canada, we are now developing a variety of initiatives to start addressing these imbalances. Examples include:

  • Increasing scholarships for women to participate in WINS events and the WINS Academy professional development certification programme.
  • Ensuring gender balance among expert presenters at WINS events and training courses.
  • Implementing an extensive research project on gender equality in nuclear security.
  • Becoming an active member of International Gender Champions.
WINS Initiatives

WINS Academy Scholarships & Events

We have now increased the number of scholarships available for women who would like to enrol in the WINS Academy and to participate in WINS events and training courses. We also plan to organise specific events focused on key issues in this area.

One of the most powerful ways to attract women to traditionally male-dominated professions is to highlight the profiles of women who are succeeding in the field.  This is why WINS is committed to ensuring a better balance in the number of male and female experts in different areas of nuclear security who present at our workshops, training courses and other events.

We are happy to report that we have already experienced success in this effort. Fully 50% of the participants at a recent WINS event focused on security incident management were women! The event was held 12-15 February 2018 in cooperation with the Government of Canada and Bruce Power, a major Canadian Nuclear Power operator.

For more information about applying for WINS Academy Scholarships, email us at gender.equality@wins.org.

WINS Academy Scholarships & Events

Gender Champions Research Project

The governments of Norway and Canada have also provided support for a research project that will enable us to examine the barriers that are inhibiting women's greater participation in nuclear security and to develop recommendations for overcoming such barriers.

To better understand the obstacles women face when entering the profession, our research will focus on several key questions:

  • What are the main barriers to increasing women’s participation in nuclear security?
  • Do these barriers differ depending on the discipline or pathway from which women enter the nuclear security field?
  • What kinds of measures will help to overcome these barriers?

We will share the final results of our research with the international community in June 2020. In the meantime, we welcome your insights, relevant research and other information you may wish to share with us.  Please contact us at gender.equality@wins.org

Gender Champions Research Project

International Gender Champions Membership

Our Executive Director, Roger Howsley, has recently become a member of International Gender Champions, which is a “leadership network that brings together female and male decision-makers determined to break down gender barriers and make gender equality a working reality in their spheres of influence.”

Only leaders who are heads of an organization, permanent mission, or institution can become members of IGC, and they must all sign the Panel Parity Pledge, which commits them to "no longer sit on single-sex panels." As a member, WINS joins a community that includes the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the heads of UN Offices at Geneva, Vienna, and Nairobi, the ILO, WHO, academic institutions, and Permanent Representatives of Member States.

IGC explains its interest in panel parity because hundreds of panels take place each year around the world, but “women remain underrepresented in panels on international law, IT, science/technology and security, while significantly less males than females sit on gender equality panels. Visibility is key for role models in the public space and the workplace, and women’s distinct and expert voices must be elevated through gender parity. Diverse points of view offer twenty-first century results, generate sustainable solutions, and lead to a change in culture. Single-sex panels are obsolete!”

For more information

For more information about these programmes, applications for WINS Academy Scholarships, and inquiries about how WINS can support employers' initiatives in this area, email us at gender.equality@wins.org.

International Gender Champions Membership
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Diverse points of view offer twenty-first century results, generate sustainable solutions, and lead to a change in culture. "

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