Griffith University Chancellor, The Honourable Leneen Forde AC has argued that a new kind of leadership is needed to assist women achieve gender equality.
“What the world really needs now is genuine leadership that transcends the old ways and replaces them with a different model of leadership based on intelligence, compassion and understanding,’’ Ms Forde said in her welcome address at the International Dialogue for Women in Leadership on November 17.
“Women in leadership positions can use the power that comes with leadership to exemplify and convey these principles.
“There are many ways to open doors and I hope our women leaders will do their best to leave doors open for others to follow.”
She said the G20 provided a great opportunity to observe and think about those things that have implications for the way the world is run, not just in the interests of individuals or single nations but in the interest of all human beings.
“We have seen some positive attempts to rise above national self-interest and deal with the big issues that the whole world must unite to consider. Among these issues are inter-generational equity and gender equality.
“Bringing about change has not always been easy but looking back over the years we have come a very long way. She said much of this change had been brought about by women in leadership roles.
“When I graduated from law school and undertook article of clerkship women were paid $5 a week, but the young men who started at the same time as me were paid $20 a week, four times as much and it wasn’t because they were better lawyers.
“Unfortunately, conditions and rules have not changed everywhere in the world and they haven’t changed yet for every young woman.”
Hosted by Griffith University and the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, the International Dialogue on Women in Leadership brought world leaders from government, business and academia to encourage and promote women’s leadership in the global economy.
The Honourable Dame Quentin Bryce AD CVO spoke at the event’s opening evening following the G20 Leaders Summit on Sunday, November 16.
Other speakers included The Honourable Michaelia Cash, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women, Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Dr Jose Angel Guerria, Secretary General Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development and Joanne Weidenmiller, CEO 1-Page, United States, the first Silicon Valley start-up to list on the ASX.