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EVENTS & TRAININGS

Consultation on Women & Security: Part II - Session II

Earlier this year, WIIS Brussels conducted a series of consultations on the evolving concept of security. Together, we explored what ‘security’ means to us personally, how this concept changed over time, and what role community plays in shaping a secure environment for us.

We’re now taking this process to the next level and are hosting another round of consultations. We intend to move a little deeper, working towards an even more profound exchange on what security means to us all. Diversity of thought is very important to us, which is why in this round, we’d like to also involve non-WIIS Brussels members. 

Join us for another virtual conversation on Wednesday 22 September between 18:30 and 20:00. This time, we’d like to invite you to bring along a friend. Anyone you think may be interested in sharing their thinking on this topic is welcome to join. We’re keen on hearing about and learning from different perspectives, and believe that involving non-members is important to come to a more inclusive understanding of what security means to women today. 

Places are limited, so make sure you register yourself and your friend by responding to this message. Once you’ve signed up, you’ll receive a Zoom link to join the event. Please do not share this link with others.

Workshop - Unexamined and Unnamed: Coloniality in Culture and Everyday Practice

We’re excited to invite you to an interactive workshop Unexamined and Unnamed: Coloniality in Culture and Everyday Practice on Monday, September 13 from 18:30-20:00.


A centuries-long world-making exercise formed the global habits, categories, assumptions, and judgements that we are socialised into, at work and at home. So this session is not a 'training' and could never be. It will be a guided space where we collectively interrogate unnamed conventions that reproduce racialised and gendered binaries and hierarchies within our everyday work. Focusing on the underlying logics will give us the understanding - and therefore the choice - to be proactive in disrupting these, which is crucial to begin to plot out new futures and alternative trajectories.

Sign up now by emailing us at training@wiis-brussels.org. Due to the summer holidays, our confirmation emails may be delayed. Please note that this event is for WIIS members. If you’re not a member yet, join our community and become a new member of WIIS Brussels. Once you’ve signed up, you will receive a Zoom link prior to the event. Please do not share this link with others.


About the trainer: 

Terri Beswick is a British-Jamaican strategist, analyst and facilitator running iklektik, a consultancy practice that's designed to cultivate new - explicitly decolonial and feminist - ways of knowing, ways of being and ways of doing within civic and political organisations.


Terri’s work is informed by a black feminist positioning. Her practice is informed by a grounding in the humanities and social sciences: political anthropology, semiology, cognitive linguistics, organisational design, the politics of peace and security, and intergovernmental policymaking.

Terri has worked across the stakeholder divide with civil society organisations and networks, think-tanks, and public institutions on human security, social justice, pluralism, and foreign policy for over 13 years as an analyst, advocate, advisor, policy researcher and facilitator.

WIIS Brussels and WIIS UK event - NATO, China and the Indo-Pacific: what role - if any - for the Alliance?

Join us on Wednesday 16 June at 5pm BST/ 6pm CEST for a virtual conversation on NATO's China and Indo-Pacific strategies, followed by a social event in which the members of WIIS Brussels, WIIS UK and other participants can meet, discuss, and exchange ideas!


The rise of China and Sino-American competition are the defining geopolitical features of our times and will feature on the agenda of the upcoming NATO Summit on 14 June. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg recently noted that the Alliance needs to take into account that "China is coming closer to us—in the Arctic, in Africa, investing heavily in our infrastructure in Europe, in cyberspace." A growing number of NATO Allies also see the Indo-Pacific as a key region for the future of global trade and security and are becoming more active in tackling regional challenges. The Alliance also has important allies in the Indo-Pacific and is looking to deepen its partnerships with like-minded democracies in the region. At the same time, NATO continues to face challenges closer to home, with a deterioration of the situation on the Alliance’s Eastern Flank.


With Ms Gwendoline Vamos (Senior Officer, Asia-Pacific, Global Partnerships, NATO), Ms Veerle Nouwens (Senior Research Fellow, International Security, RUSI) and Dr Garima Mohan (Fellow, Asia Programme, German Marshall Fund), we will discuss what role - if any - NATO can and should play vis a vis the China challenge and with Indo-Pacific partners. What specific role for NATO in the multi-fora transatlantic dialogue on China? What interests does NATO have in the Indo-Pacific, if any? What do Allies and regional partners want from NATO in this instance?


We will debate whether and how the Alliance should be more involved and the impact it can have - and how to balance a more global role with NATO’s traditional areas of responsibility in the Euro-Atlantic.


This event will be moderated by Ms Alice Billon-Galland (Research Fellow, Chatham House) from the WIIS UK Leadership Team, and Ms Elena Saenz Feehan (Programme Manager, Friends of Europe) from the WIIS Brussels Steering Committee.


The panel discussion and Q&A will be followed by a social in breakout rooms, so that the members of WIIS Brussels, WIIS UK, and other participants can meet and get to know each other.


Please join us for this informal and unique opportunity, we are looking forward to engaging with you during the event!


Please register here before 4pm on Tuesday, 15 June.


Zoom details will be shared closer to the date.

Online workshop: Speak with Impact!

We’re excited to invite you to an interactive workshop ‘Speak with Impact!’ on Monday, June 7 from 12:30-14:00.


Connecting with others to get your message across online is challenging for many of us. In this workshop, Sylvie Verleye will offer tips and tricks how to connect with your audience live but - given the current situation - especially online. Most of Sylvie’s coachees use her tips in meeting situations when they need to communicate with colleagues, management, or customers – but also for speaking in front of big audiences or webinars.


Sign up now by emailing us at training@wiis-brussels.org. Please note that this event is for members only and spaces are limited. If you’re not a member yet, join our community and become a new member of WIIS Brussels. Once you’ve signed up, you will receive a Zoom link to join the event. Please do not share this link with others.


About the trainer:

Sylvie Verleye created the Simply Talking method and has coached thousands of people for their pitch, TEDTalk, conference, meeting or sales talk. She uses her 19 years experience in presenting but also her seven-year experience as a TV news anchor. For every live television performance, she was struck by her skyrocket high heartbeat. But she learned how to deal with these nerves and loves to share these insights with you so that you show confidence on and off stage.

Conversation with Maryem van den Heuvel

This is a conversation you don’t want to miss!


Maryem van den Heuvel was the Chief Foreign Policy Advisor to the President of the European Council Charles Michel, and started recently her new job as Director General for External Relations at the Council. As senior member of the Dutch diplomatic service, she served as the Netherlands Ambassador to Belgium and was Managing Director for the America’s at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Being born in Tunisia and raised in the Netherlands triggered her interest in an international career, which by the way she combines with being a mother of five.


We look forward to getting to know her both personally and professionally, hearing about her life story, her career and her current job.


Sign up now by emailing us at info@wiis-brussels.org. Please note that this event is for members only and spaces are limited. If you’re not a member yet, join our community and become a new member of WIIS Brussels. Once you’ve signed up, you will receive a Zoom link to join the event. Please do not share this link with others.

WIIS Brussels Training: Why you need to start building your personal brand NOW!

We’re excited to invite you to an interactive workshop ‘Why you need to start building your personal brand NOW!’ on May 4 from 19:00-21:00.


The 2-hour hands-on workshop will cover:

  • Why an effective Personal Branding strategy is so important

  • How to create a successful strategy that fits your personality and goals

  • Most common mistakes you should not make

  • Focus points for your own strategy


After the workshop, you’ll understand why having a Personal Branding Strategy that fits YOU is so important. This workshop helps you to implement an effective strategy to make the right connections, create new possibilities, open doors or get the job you really want.


Sign up now by emailing us at training@wiis-brussels.org. Please note that this event is for members only and spaces are limited. If you’re not a member yet, join our community and become a new member of WIIS Brussels. Once you’ve signed up, you will receive a Zoom link to join the event. Please do not share this link with others.


About the trainer:

Yustine Alvares runs multiple businesses and has worked for more than 14 years in Asia, Europe and South America. Her company Dark Blue International focuses on marketing, personal & business branding, design and (international) growth, whilst her other company PRPHC is a private member club that organizes high-end experiences and events around the world. Yustine is the community builder and founder of Asia Signature, a Facebook group and Instagram account she recently started to celebrate women, their roots and inspire them to become the best version of themselves. As a public speaker, panelist, workshop leader, and moderator she speaks on (female) entrepreneurship, personal/business branding, women empowerment, equality & inclusion.


Save the date for our upcoming trainings:

Tuesday, June 7 from 12:30-14:00: Speak with Impact with Sylvie Verlewe

WIIS Moms Power Hour

We’re excited to invite you to our first ‘WIIS Moms Power Hour’ on Friday, 2 April from 12-13h. The objective of this new monthly networking event is to create a welcoming space for WIIS Moms to connect, to be inspired, and to lift each other up. The Power Hour will offer an informal space for conversations that matter to professional moms. The event will be guided by inspirational input and facilitated by Daria Nashat.


The ‘WIIS Moms Power Hour’ will take place every first Friday of the month from 12-13h. Dates are: April 2, May 7, June 4 etc. To sign up for this monthly drop-in event, please send a message to dnashat@wiis-brussels.org. Once you receive the Zoom link, you are welcome to join any of the upcoming meetings (no RSVP required).


About:

Daria Nashat is the co-founder of ‘Women in Politics’, speaker and trainer on inclusive leadership, resilience and selfcare. She is a mother with a vision, a community builder and a circle process facilitator. Daria is a certified Trauma Awareness and Resilience (STAR) trainer, co-founder of the Women’s Sanctuary Circle and has a background in peacebuilding, refugee return and post-conflict development. Since 2020, she is a WIIS Brussels Steering Committee member. For more information visit: www.darianashat.com


Looking forward to seeing you soon. In the meantime, stay well and take good care of yourself.

Online training: Defining success, getting ahead, and doing it your own way

We’re excited to invite you to the workshop 'Defining success, getting ahead and doing it your own way' on Thursday, March 25 from 12:00-13:30.


Sonal Bahl, career coach, founder, and former HR Director invites us for an interactive workshop and an honest conversation amongst women about what's important, what's holding us back and how to get what we want from our career.


Sign up now by emailing us at training@wiis-brussels.org.


Please note that this event is for members only and spaces are limited. If you’re not a member yet, join our community and become a new member of WIIS Brussels. Once you’ve signed up, you will receive a Zoom link to join the event. Please do not share this link with others.


About the trainer:

Sonal Bahl is a Career Coach and Founder of SuperCharge, a Career Advisory firm. A former HR Director, she has served for almost two decades in HR leadership roles in leading firms like GE, PricewaterhouseCoopers and others, having lived in India, Europe, and Latin America. Sonal speaks English, Spanish, French, Hindi and basic Dutch.


Save the dates!

Tuesday, May 4 from 19:00-21:00: Personal Branding with Yustine Alvarez

Tuesday, June 7 from 12:30-14:00: Speak with Impact with Sylvie Verlewe

Post-patriarchal security: inclusion and equity for the other 55%

WIIS Brussels is delighted to be partnering with Friends of Europe for the event "Post-patriarchal security: inclusion and equity for the other 55%". The event will take place online on 18 March from 5 to 6pm.


Despite institutional commitment to abide by UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (WPS), women are still largely under-represented in crisis management, security and defence. NATO and the Council of the EU have striven for more inclusion, adopting a Joint Declaration to consider issues on WPS in 2017. The European Commission has also committed to better inclusion of women in peace and security in its strategic policies. However, the translation of these commitments into practice has fallen short. According to the #SHEcurity Index, women on average make up only 11% of military staff and 25% of police forces in the EU, its member states and the G20. Furthermore, the WPS Agenda lacks a holistic approach to gender and its narrow approach overlooks the experiences of LGBTIQ+ people in conflict and disaster settings, as well as within security institutions. Meanwhile, across the Atlantic, a transgender military ban exposed US service members to be discharged on the basis of gender identity, until the Biden administration repealed the ban in January 2021.


In addition to the obstacles in joining security forces, both women and members of the LGBTIQ+ community face stigma and prejudices once serving, which can often go unrecognised. Whether unbalanced representation is caused by a lack of diversity or reluctant hiring processes, a more pro-active approach is needed in order to achieve better inclusion in the peace and security workforce. Additionally, a broader understanding of the WPS framework would strengthen the concept of gender equality and weaken the effects of discrimination, promoting the transformation of military culture into a more inclusive and diverse environment.


Speakers:

Marie Meigård, Sergeant Major in the Swedish Armed Forces

Hannah Neumann, Member of the European Parliament Subcommittee on Security and Defence

Alan Sneddon, police officer in Scotland and member of The European LGBT Police Association’s Executive Committee


Moderator:

Elena Saenz Feehan, Programme Manager for Peace, Security and Defence and member of the WIIS (Women In International Security) Steering Committee


For more information and to watch live, go on the Friends of Europe event page HERE

Virtual Consultations on Women & Security

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to shape our lives, and has led many to re-consider the meaning of the concept of ‘security’. Moving beyond conventional understandings of security in defense and military terms, we are offered an opportunity to sharpen our thinking and reflect on the breadth of the meaning of ‘security’ in a post-COVID world.

In 2021, WIIS Brussels will consult widely on this evolving concept of security with various groups. We would like to start this conversation with our members. What does ‘security’ mean to you personally? How has that perception changed over the past years, and what role does your family, employer, or even the state play in providing for your security? What would you say a secure world looks like?

We wish to offer a safe space – a platform – where we can ask powerful questions that will hopefully trigger and nurture a self-reflection process. Members of the Steering committee will facilitate this conversation. Guiding questions will be raised in an effort to find meaning during a time of profound change and uncertainty. We’ll help you navigate your own thinking from the individual, collective, and conceptual understanding of security and compare notes with each other. We are not organizing towards a particular output beyond creating a safe space for members to have a conversation that matters, but we hope to generate innovative ideas to enrich our collective thinking on what security is, and should mean to our community going forward. Let us see where it leads us.

Join us for another virtual conversation on this subject on Tuesday 16 March between 18:30 and 20:00 (via Zoom). Places are limited, so make sure you register by e-mailing us at info@wiis-brussels.org. Once you’ve signed up, you’ll receive a Zoom link to join the event. Please do not share this link with others.

Our first virtual conversation on this subject took place on 28 January and the second on 2 March. 

Webinar: Our Women in Foreign Policy

On 8 March, Corinna Horst, WIIS Brussels Steering Committee member and senior fellow and deputy director of German Marshall Fund’s Brussels office, led a conversation on women in foreign policy for the Dutch Permanent Representations to the EU and NATO and the Dutch Embassy in Brussels. Held on International Women's Day, the online lunch seminar celebrated the insipring leadership of women, featuring four leading Dutch women in foreign policy in Brussels. 


We were joined by the Netherlands’ Ambassador to NATO Marisa Gerards, Chief Foreign Policy Advisor to the President of the European Council Maryem van den Heuvel (tbc), PSC-Ambassador Delphine Pronk and EU special representative for the Middle East Peace Process Susanna Terstal.


We invited them to share their experiences on opportunities and challenges for women in diplomacy and international politics. A stage in which challenges abound. The EU is facing a resurgent Russia to the east, a more assertive China further afield and increasing instability to its south closer to home. This demands specific answers and a renewed investment in multilateralism and long standing cooperation such as NATO. We talked about the this myriad of complex challenges.


But we also asked the panel what difference it makes to have female voices at the tables of power. How is this perceived by our partners in the theatres of conflict? And what are the lessons learned in their personal journeys as diplomats they bring to the table in this time of global pushback on women’s rights? What advice do they have for future generations and what needs to happen next to get more women into senior diplomatic roles and to ensure more gender parity?


The conversation was led by Corinna Horst, senior fellow and deputy director of German Marshall Fund’s Brussels office, member of the steering committee of the Brussels chapter of Women in International Security (WIIS) and co-founder of The Brussels Binder, an online database of female policy experts. She is also co-author of the book “Women Leading The Way in Brussels”, which looks at women leadership in Europe and Brussels.

Conversation with Rose Gottemoeller and Federica Mogherini

We loved the conversation we had with them last year, so we're delighted to welcome them back!

Please join us for an exclusive virtual event with Rose Gottemoeller and Federica Mogherini on 3 December 2020 starting at 16:00 (CET). This conversation, moderated by the Permanent Representative of the Netherlands to NATO, Marisa Gerards and the Permanent Representative of the Netherlands to the EU Political and Security Committee, Delphine Pronk, will be an opportunity to catch up with our guests on a personal and professional level. 

One year after leaving their leadership positions, at NATO and the EU, we will hear more about what Rose and Federica are doing now in their new jobs - respectively at Stanford University in California and at the College of Europe in Bruges. How are they experiencing the change? Having both worked inside the large Brussels-based institutions, we are curious to hear "what's it like" to look at NATO and the EU from the outside. 

This event is organized with the support of the Delegation of the Netherlands to NATO. Please note that it is open for WIIS members only. Not a member yet? It's not too late - join us!