Indonesian workshop to empower female leaders

A joint project by Flinders and Padjadjaran universities will culminate in a women’s leadership workshop in Bandung, Indonesia in July 2019 to help advance women in public sector leadership in that country while building valuable relationships.

The project is being led by Dr Helen McLaren and Associate Professor Cassandra Star of Flinders, together with Dr Ida Widiangsih of Padjadjaran University, following receipt of a $30,000 grant funded by the Australia-Indonesia Institute. The project builds on existing relationships the Flinders researchers have developed in West Java from previous government training and university exchange visits.

Associate Professor Star says that in the Indonesian public sector “women in leadership roles are rare and therefore tailored leadership mentoring is invaluable”.

The project will be informed by evidence of ‘what works’ for Australian and Indonesian women in leadership, from the perspective of successful women.

Its first stage will gather senior female public sector leaders from both Indonesia and Australia in Adelaide for a series of forums in November 2018, where they will share experiences and knowledge, with a focus on policy informed change.

Researchers in Bandung will then survey female government leaders to understand the variables and factors which enable women to succeed in change leadership.

The survey findings will inform a workshop targeted to women who are new to public sector leadership or established managers in Bandung.

Dr McLaren highlights that there are women in Australia and Indonesian who are successfully breaking the glass ceiling.

“Working with, and learning from, these women is exciting in terms of advancement of women in the public sector,” she says.

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