On 10–11 October 2017, Vilnius will host the Advancing Women in Leadership Roles Forum for Europe. It is organized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in cooperation with the Lithuanian National Olympic Committee (LNOC). LNOC President Daina Gudzinevičiūtė is also the Chair of the Commission for Gender Equality in Sport of the European Olympic Committees, so the commission is actively contributing to the organization and moderation of the event.
Lithuania received the honour of organizing the first forum on this topic in Europe. In August 2017, the Advancing Women in Leadership Forum Africa and Asia was held in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda.
“We are pleased that the International Olympic Committee supported our initiative. It is very important that on the 25th anniversary of Lithuania’s first time participating in the Olympic Games after the restoration of its Independence, Thomas Bach, the President of the IOC, will arrive to congratulate us and will also open the event. We believe that the programme will be particularly interesting, because we will have diverse participants in the discussions. In addition, the issue of gender equality is one of the main points in the TOC programme Agenda 2020,” said Ms. Gudzinevičiūtė.
The participants of the Forum will be greeted by Dalia Grybauskaitė, the President of the Republic of Lithuania, Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee, Janez Kocijančič, Acting President of the European Olympic Committees, and Daina Gudzinevičiūtė, President of the LNOC.
The Forum will be attended by Halla Tómasdóttir, 2016 presidential candidate of Iceland, Niels Nygaard, President of the Danish Olympic Committee, Snežana Samardžić-Marković, Council of Europe’s Director General of Democracy and the leaders of various European sports organizations.
Over the last 20 years, the International Olympic Committee has been largely focused on gender equality in sports and encouraged both National Olympic Committees (NOCs) and International Federations to increase the number of women at all levels of management. Therefore, the IOC is continuously initiating conferences and forums dedicated to women’s leadership and greater involvement of women in sport. These events enable NOCs, International Federations and other sports organizations to share their experience and best practices and develop effective strategies to increase the number of women in management.
In October 2016, the IOC Executive Committee presented recommendations to all members of the Olympic movement to achieve at least 30% of women in management by 2020. In order to better implement these recommendations, the Forum organized by the LNOC is expected to serve as a platform for European leaders, who will be able to discuss ideas for how this objective can be achieved.