top of page

Event: Breaking the Glass Ceiling? The Future of Female Leadership in the UAE

On 15 March 2023, the Emirates Society hosted an online panel discussion on the future of female leadership in the UAE. Dyala Nusseibeh was joined by Diana Wilde, Fatema Al Nuaimi and Dr Sara Chehab for a fascinating and insightful discussion.

The panellists discussed the successes and challenges of women in leadership positions in the UAE and shared their thoughts on how the UAE is driving change to elevate women in the workplace.

Our speakers:

Diana Wilde, Co-Founder, Aurora50

Diana Wilde is an impact entrepreneur and the co-founder of Aurora50. Diana has over 20 years of experience across strategy and development. Diana is a business and finance graduate from the University of Westminster and has substantial experience growing businesses in the information services, training and events industry. Diana is also a committee member for the Association of Corporate Treasures (Middle East). Diana’s work with Aurora50 exemplifies her passion and commitment to making a difference and building communities, particularly in the area of diversity and inclusion. Aurora50 is a UAE-based social enterprise that develops inclusive leaders and environments to achieve their powerful vision: to ensure gender balance in the workplace. Aurora50 was co-founded by Sheikha Shamma bint Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan and Diana in 2020. In the two years since Aurora50 began, the number of women in UAE listed board seats has risen from 3.5% to 8.9%. They have recently expanded to work beyond striving for gender balance in the boardroom by looking at equity, diversity and inclusion.

Fatema Al Nuaimi, Executive Vice President, ADNOC Downstream Business Management

Mrs. Fatema Al Nuaimi is the Executive Vice President, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) Downstream Business Management. Previously, Fatema was the Chief Executive Officer at ADNOC. During her 20-year career in the ADNOC Group, Fatema has held a variety of management and technical positions. Fatema was appointed the first Chairperson of the ADNOC Gender Balance Committee, which was created in 2016. As well as the Gender Balance Committee, the ANDOC Group established a women's leadership development programme and is committed to supporting women develop and excel in their careers. Fatema is a board member of Emirates General Petroleum (Emarat) Establishment, a board member of National Gas Shipping Company (NGSCO) as part of ADNOC Logistics and Services, and a board member of ADNOC Offshore. She is a member of the International Association for Energy Economics. In 2019, she was appointed as the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition & Conference (ADIPEC) Awards Chairperson, and is a member of ADIPEC Executive Steering Committee.

Dr. Sara Chehab, Senior Research Fellow, Anwar Gargash Diplomatic Academy, and the author of the Women in Diplomacy Index

Dr. Sara Chehab is a Senior Research Fellow at the Anwar Gargash Diplomatic Academy (AGDA), specializing in gender and diplomacy. In addition, she teaches courses on International Economics, Political Economy, Comparative Politics and Global Contemporary Affairs and offers executive training courses in economic diplomacy, gender studies, and women, peace and security (WPS). Dr Chehab’s research interests revolve around gender and diplomacy and women in foreign policy. She is the author of the annual Women in Diplomacy Index, a unique index that tracks the percentage share of women ambassadors in over 40 countries. Her published works include the article, Social Networks and News: The Case of Emirati Women in Dubai and several opinion pieces in leading newspapers. Dr Chehab received her PhD in Political Science and International Relations, from the University of Delaware in the US. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science and International Relations from the same university, as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from the Lebanese American University (LAU), in Lebanon.

The event was expertly moderated by Dyala Nusseibeh, director of Abu Dhabi Art and vice-chair of The Emirates Society.

bottom of page