Recognising Workplace Gender Equality in the 2021 WEPs AwardsNews /02 December 2021
Investing in Women is pleased to have partnered with UN Women’s WeEmpowerAsia program for the 2021 Asia Pacific WEPs Awards to celebrate the achievements of 22 companies and their business leaders – selected from 700 applicants in 20 countries region-wide – and promote their efforts to establish and sustain equality in their workplace and community. The regional awarding ceremony was viewed online and live from Bangkok, Thailand on Nov. 18, following national awarding ceremonies held separately in seven countries. .
WGE has proven business outcomes, including increased profitability and productivity, employee retention, greater creativity and innovation, enhanced company reputation, and increased competitiveness. While these are incentives in themselves, recognising outstanding WGE performance celebrates company commitment to WGE and aims to trigger a more widespread adoption of gender-equal initiatives.
“Never underestimate the power of leading by example,” said H.E. David Daly, Ambassador of the European Union to Thailand, in his keynote speech. He stressed that every government, company, and civil society organisation must do their part, act on their own strengths and within their spheres of influence, and inspire others to take concrete action—because working hard to achieve gender equality is not just the right thing to do, but also the smart thing to do, socially and economically.
Sarah Goulding, Assistant Secretary of the Gender Equality Branch in the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, also stressed collaboration and collective effort when she spoke of the work that Investing in Women is doing to support Business Coalitions (BCs) committed to advancing gender equality in the region. The WEPs, she noted, can be a good starting point for companies to make a commitment to WGE, and the BCs can provide a practical pathway for Women’s Economic Principles (WEPs) signatories to be part of a peer group of businesses championing gender equality in their workplaces and in the wider business community. Moreover, the BCs can assist in providing a thorough and detailed assessment to understand the strengths and weaknesses of their WGE practices and identify what has the most impact. Ms Goulding was pleased to see BC member firms recognised at the national and regional level of the 2021 WEPs Awards.
Highlight: WGE excellence in BC member firms, IW partners
The 2021 Asia-Pacific WEPs Awards, which held national awards in seven countries in the region including Indonesia and the Philippines, reinforced the seven principles to promote women’s leadership and economic participation through six categories: Leadership Commitment; Gender-inclusive Workplace; Gender-responsive Marketplace; Community Engagement and Partnerships; Transparency and Reporting; and Youth Leadership.
Notably, several member firms of the Philippine Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (PBCWE) and the Indonesia Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (IBCWE) were recognised in the national awards per country, as well as the regional awards. These include:
2021 Asia-Pacific WEPs Awards winners:
- The Body Shop Indonesia, 1st runner-up – Community Engagement and Partnerships
- L’Oréal Indonesia, 2nd runner-up – Gender-inclusive Workplace
2021 Indonesia WEPs Awards winners:
- Nicke Widyawati, CEO at PT Pertamina (Persero), Champion – Leadership Commitment
- Aria Widyanto, CRSO at PT Amartha Mikro Fintek, 1st runner-up – Leadership Commitment
- Neneng Goenadi, Country Managing Director at Grab Indonesia, 2nd runner-up – Leadership Commitment
- L’Oréal Indonesia, Champion – Gender-inclusive Workplace
- The Body Shop Indonesia, 1st runner-up, Gender-inclusive Workplace
- The Body Shop Indonesia, Champion – Community Engagement and Partnerships
- PT Amartha Mikro Fintek, 1st runner-up – Community Engagement and Partnerships
- BTPN Syariah, 1st runner-up, Gender-responsive Marketplace
- Telkomtelstra (now Digiserve by Telkom Indonesia), 1st runner-up – Transparency and Reporting
2021 Philippines WEPs Awards winners:
- Philippine National Bank, Champion – Transparency and Reporting
- Nina D. Aguas, Executive Chairperson at The Insular Life Assurance Company, Ltd.,1st runner-up – Leadership Commtment
- Accenture, Inc., 2nd runner-up – Gender-inclusive Workplace
In addition, Investing in Women’s partners were similarly distinguished by the WEPs Awards, including our Influencing Gender Norms partner Edukasyon.ph, named SME Champion – Community Engagement and Partnerships in both the national and regional awards; and our Impact Investing partner InBestCap Ventures Holdings, Inc.’s Co-Founder and Managing Partner David King Em Pangan, who was awarded 2nd runner-up – Youth Leadership Award in the Philippine WEPs.
At the regional awarding ceremony, Floramel Villanueva, Senior Workplace Gender Equality Advancement and Development Manager at Investing in Women, presented the awards for Leadership Commitment and Gender-inclusive Workplace, the latter award being under the custodianship of Investing in Women.
Among the regional judges and moderators for the breakout sessions were PBCWE Co-Chairperson Ma. Aurora “Boots” Geotina-Garcia and IBCWE Executive Director Maya Juwita.
For the complete list of regional winners, visit the UN Women Asia Pacific website.