2014 Annual Summit

W4SG hosted its 2014 annual summit at the Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel in Stockholm on May 19th.

HE Ewa Björling, Swedish Minister of Trade, and HE Najla Al Kaabi, UAE Assistant Undersecretary for International Cooperation and Development, were key note speakers.

We also had the pleasure of welcoming the following speakers:

  • HH Sheikha Najla Al Qassimi, UAE Ambassador to Sweden and W4SG Board Member
  • Dr. Shaikha Al Maskari, Chairperson, Al Maskari Holding
  • Anna Lithagen, Senior Advisor, Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth
  • Dr. Per Eriksson, Vice Chancelor, Lund University
  • Mette Laursen, CEO, LinKS
  • Annika Joelsson, Global Head of Talent Development, Ipsos
  • Lena Bergström, CEO, MiL Institute
  • Åsa Skogström Feldt, Business Leader, Social Entrepreneurship Initiative, IKEA
  • Leila Ben Gacem, Founder, Blue Fish
  • Hana Y AlSyaed, Head of Diversity and Chairwoman of Steering Committee, OFC Women Network (OWN), Olayan Financing Company
  • Viveka Hirdman-Ryrberg, Head of Group Communications, SEB
  • Hessa Tahlak, Director of Development and Research, Dubai Women Establishment
  • HE Eng. Fatima Obeid Al-Jaber, Chairman, Executive Council of Abu Dhabi Business Women Council

The Summit’s impact:

Goal: The summit brought together remarkable leaders from business, academia, government and civil society from Scandinavia and the Gulf Region. The summit shared the stories of inspiring female leaders, host panels on issues relevant to cross-regional engagement, and fostered stronger connections between innovators in both regions. The summit was an excellent opportunity for any organization or company aiming to increase their engagement between the regions.

Purpose: To share the success of female leaders from both regions and inspire new leaders by:

  • Facilitating spaces, conversations and meetings for strong relationship building
  • Facilitate and support Scandinavia – Gulf trade relations
  • Strengthen diplomatic relations between regions
  • Increase cultural awareness
  • Share current research on female leadership development
  • Highlight individuals and organizations who are leading the way – innovators

Outcome: The summit has had a long-term impact on cross-regional development by:

  • Deepening current relationships and strengthening new connections between the Gulf and Scandinavia
  • Challenging many misconceptions people have about the ‘other’ from various sectors and the different regions – increase trust.
  • Spotlighting potential for growth – economically, politically and culturally
  • Creating platforms for engagement amongst summit participants for existing or new projects

Support Came From:

  • Center for Social Innovation, Lund University
  • Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Lund University
  • SEB
  • Emirates Airlines
  • UAE Embassy in Stockholm
  • Dubai Women Establishment
  • Tillväxtverket
  • MiL Institute


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This website has been made possible with support from the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth (Tillväxtverket). Support came within the program “Promoting Women’s Entrepreneurship” under the project “The Golden Rules of Leadership“.

Visiting Address
Lund, Sweden
Mailing Address
CMES, Lund University
c/o Lars-Erik Olofsson
PO Box 201
221 00 Lund