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Women jumping over hurdles

Success of Women in World Athletics programme celebrated with final seminar

Since 2012, a team of academics led by Loughborough University’s School of Business and Economics has worked with European and British Athletics on the Women in World Athletics (WIWA) programme.

The annual development programme is aimed at supporting women who are transitioning into leadership positions through seminars in a range of areas including action planning, leadership career development, mindfulness and vision.

A closing seminar in May marked the end of the five-year programme, where 55 delegates from 22 countries attended. 120 women have completed the WIWA course since its inception.

The session focused on celebrating the success of the programme, with discussion points ranging from sharing individual journeys, focusing on vision, inspiring others, how to effect change, and becoming an agent of change.

European Athletics and British Athletics have worked together to ensure a mix of female coaches, officials, event volunteers, competition administration staff and event management staff have been represented on the programme.

The purpose of the final three seminars was to move participants from reflection to action in pursuing their goals.

Speaking about the WIWA programme, Cherry Alexander, Major Events Director at British Athletics and Managing Director of London 2017, said: “The Women in World Athletics seminar has been an incredibly successful development programme for all of the women who have attended from around the world.

“A strong network has been an important part of the journey throughout the programme, and it is inspiring to see the strength of that network grow, providing an invaluable tool for the development of each delegate.”

Running alongside the programme is a research project, run by Loughborough academics Professor Christine Coupland and Stuart West, which seeks to identify key outputs from the programme and track the long-term progress of delegates.