First “Women Energize Women” Conference

The conference attracted more than 250 participants from over 50 countries
The conference attracted more than 250 participants from over 50 countries © Women Energize Women Conference 2022 / @ Nadine Stegemann

On May 12, 2022, the 1st “Women Energize Women” (WEW) Conference took place in Munich within the context of The Smarter E – Europe’s leading platform for the energy industry. More than 250 energy experts from over 50 countries participated in discussion rounds, workshops and other formats on urgent energy and gender issues – looking at them from a female perspective. The conference is a highlight of the “Women Energize Women” communication campaign that has been implemented by GIZ in collaboration with the German Renewable Energy Federation (BEE) within the framework of the Bilateral Energy Partnerships (EP) and on behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK). The conference, as the first of its kind to provide a stage exclusively for female energy experts, sent an important signal to the male-dominated energy sector.

The fact that women are underrepresented in the energy sector is shown in a study by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) revealing a share of only 22% women working in the traditional energy sector and 32% women in renewables. Female perspectives are not only crucial in order to shape the energy transition in a way that meets the needs of society as a whole: Studies show that a higher share of women, also in leadership positions, improves innovativeness and collaboration at the workplace and increases the economic performance and sustainability of the company. Globally, the number of jobs in the renewable energy sector is estimated to more than triple by 2050. For the energy transitions to be scaled up and accelerated as required to meet agreed climate goals, sustainable energy needs to harness talent in all its forms and foster innovation across a vast array of skills, applications and specializations. The empowerment of female experts, thus, is the answer to the talent shortage in the sustainable energy sector.

The conference was opened by three inspiring women: Ellen von Zitzewitz, Deputy Director Climate and Energy Cooperation (BMWK), GIZ Managing Director Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven and Dr Simone Peter, President of BEE. “The energy sector is still mistakenly considered to be a male domain. This ignores the impressive contributions that women around the globe make already as drivers of innovation and technical experts”, Mrs. Hoven stressed the importance of the topic. A diverse number of high-level change makers and sector experts ensured exciting panel discussions on topics such as the efficiency and scalability of green hydrogen, pressing energy transition issues, and women's access to finance and education.

A Jordanian delegation travelled to Munich to attend the “Women Energize Women Conference”, among them representatives from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (MEMR), a media representative from Al-Ghad Newspaper (Jordan News) and a mentee from the Energising Women to Advance the Energy Transition Mentoring Programme. Eng. Shorouq Abdel Ghani, the Director of Planning & Organizational Development Department, MEMR, participated in the panel discussion “Rethinking the Energiewende – How to build a global hydrogen economy?​” where she stressed on the one hand the importance of hydrogen for the energy transition in Jordan and on the other hand the role of this promising sector with its new job opportunities for Jordanian women. Apart from their participation in the conference, the Jordanian delegation attended the smarter E Europe exhibition to enhance their understanding of the photovoltaic market trends and the innovative solar energy technologies being developed.

About “Women Energize Women”:

The “Women Energize Women” conference is part of the “Women Energize Women” communication initiative, which was launched in November 2021 – to empower, motivate, inform, inspire and connect women in the energy sector from across the world offering interactive events and inspiring role, making female voices in the energy sector heard. It has already reached more than 1.7 million people via Twitter , LinkedIn , and YouTube .

Many inspiring speakers shared their views on the podium, amongst others Deputy Director Climate and Energy Cooperation (BMWK) Ellen von Zitzewitz, who opened the conference © Women Energize Women Conference 2022 / @ Nadine Stegemann

Shorouq Abdel-Ghani, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources Jordan (left), and Moderator Geraldine de Bastion (right) on the Opening Panel about building a global hydrogen economy © Women Energize Women Conference 2022 / @ Nadine Stegemann

A female delegation from Jordan participated in the “Women Energize Women” Conference to discuss pressing issues regarding gender in the energy sector with women from different countries © Women Energize Women Conference 2022 / @ Nadine Stegemann