The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA) International have launched an inaugural “Women in Maritime” survey to examine the proportion and distribution of women working in the maritime sector, from support roles to executive level positions.
The survey is part of a series of activities aimed at laying the groundwork for further discussions on how to build a more diverse workforce within the maritime sector. The data obtained by the survey is meant to help build a picture of diversity and gender equality in the industry.
The launch follows the 2020 signing of the IMO-WISTA Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on promoting greater diversity and inclusion through enhanced cooperation activities in the maritime sector. The MoU, signed by IMO and WISTA International, aims to set a framework for both IMO and WISTA to promote gender diversity and inclusion as vital factors in providing a sustainable future for the shipping industry worldwide.
WISTA is an international organization with a mission to attract and support women at the management level, in the maritime, trading and logistics sectors. The MoU aims to set a framework for both IMO and WISTA to promote gender diversity and inclusion as vital factors in providing a sustainable future for the shipping industry worldwide.
“Diversity in maritime matters. Empowering women fuels thriving economies across the world, spurs growth and development, and benefits everyone working in the global maritime community and beyond,” said IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim. “We need solid data on female participation, as this will enable us to track and quantify our ambitions in what has traditionally been a male-dominated sector. I am pleased to invite all Member States and maritime stakeholders to take part in this important survey.”
“Having comparable data is a key component when creating programs and proposing policies that will increase the participation of women in maritime,” said Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou, President at WISTA International. “It is an essential step forward in creating a more diverse and inclusive environment in our sector. With our global reach we can amplify the strength of this survey to show real results and back our drive towards an inclusive maritime sector.”
Additional initiatives under the IMO-WISTA MoU include developing a database of female experts in a wide range of maritime subjects who are available for speaking engagements, meant to contribute towards more diverse panels.
The survey is open to IMO Member States, IGOs, NGOs, public and private companies in the maritime sector and maritime training establishments.