Wanted: Women in Water

International Women's Day conference 2016

  • 17 Mar 2016
  • 14:00 - 17:00
  • Auditorium A1, UNESCO-IHE, Westvest 7, Delft
Western Europe
Delft, The Netherlands

The theme for UNESCO-IHE's International Women's Day 2016 is 'Wanted: Women in Water'. The conference will include three keynote speakers and will allocate time for discussion. It will be a forum for debate and reflection on the relevance, opportunities and obstacles of women choosing a career in the water sector.

Keynote speakers

Our keynote speakers are three exceptional women who will inspire the audience to debate and reflect on why it is important to have more women in the water sector, and what the opportunities and obstacles are to achieve that goal. 

Esther Bosman, Director Business Unit Water NL, Royal HaskoningDHV
Esther Bosman is a water manager, graduated from the Delft University of Technology, and has worked on on water issues since 1998. Her main drivers are solving water related problems, working with people and sustainability. In 2016 the business lines Water Technology and Rivers, Delta & Coasts at Royal HaskoningDHV merged into a new Business line Water, working in the Netherlands, Europe, India/Middle East/Africa and Asia Pacific. Ms. Bosman became the Director Business Unit Water Netherlands, managing a group of 400 water professionals.

Ndey-Isatou Njie, Former Chief, Water Energy and Capacity Development  Branch Secretary, UN-Water Division for Sustainable Development, UN-DESA
Ms. Ndey Isatou Njie, recently retired, was the Secretary of UN-Water as well as the Chief, Water, Energy and Strategies Branch at DSD/UNDESA. An UNESCO-IHE alumnus, she has over 30 years of experience in water resources and environmental management. Prior to joining DESA, she served as UNDP's capacity development practice leader for West and Central Africa and with IUCN as strategic planning adviser for Africa under the strategies for sustainability programme. Ms. Njie was the first Executive Director for The Gambia National Environment Agency (NEA), and led the national preparations for UNCED. 

Prof. dr. Simone Buitendijk, Vice-rector Magnificus, Leiden University
Leiden University is very active in generating awareness and creating policies around diversity issues in an academic setting. Simone Buitendijk, the Vice-rector Magnificus and member of the Board of the University of Leiden, plays a very active role in these processes. Prof. Buitendijk is a member of the LERU (League of European Research Universities) Gender Steering Group. She co-authored the 2013 LERU position paper 'Women, research and universities: excellence without gender bias' and of the 2015 LERU advice paper of Gendered Research and Innovation. Prof. Buitendijk studied Medicine in Utrecht, obtained her PhD in Leiden and a Master's of Public Health at Yale University.

Group discussions

Group discussions will be held on provocative statements dealing with the conference theme of Women in Water. Conclusions from these discussion will be presented during the wrap-up of the conference. 

People can also join the discussion on Twitter, using the hashtag #IWDC.

Live stream

Follow UNESCO-IHE's  International Women's Day conference 2016 online! The event will be live-streamed at 14.00hrs (NL). Click here for the live-stream.

Previous Women´s Day conferences

Conference on sustainable food security
news item & video

Conference on tapping into the unlocked potential of women in emergencies
news item & video


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