Cover photo for Women Who Change The World - Birgit Liodden

TOOL Spawn in TOOL for Women2 yr. ago

Women Who Change The World - Birgit Liodden

After pledging to explore alternatives to flights in 2020, Norwegian sustainability & ocean leader Birgit Liodden embarks on a flight-free journey from Oslo to Mumbai across land and sea. School strikers back in March 2019 lead to this commitment.

The journey consist of hydrogen car roadtrip through Denmark, Germany, France and Italy; cargo ship and road transport to Jordan; electric car roadtrip through Saudi Arabia and UAE; and container ship onwards to Mumbai.

The journey is a collaborative initiative conducted in partnership with GreenStat, Harvest Environmental Magazine, SHE Community, Hydrogen Norway, Bellona/ Sahara Forest Project, FreiXchange, Decarbonify and a number of WEF Young Global Leaders and profiled change-makers across Europe/Middle East/India. CO2 footprint will be analyzed and shared for each part. And a number of unresolved cases, representing innovation opportunities, will be highlighted.

Travel schedule – preliminary:

14-18.2: Europe, DFDS to Copenhagen. Hydrogen roadtrip to Genova with GreenStat car, through Denmark, Germany, France & Monaco

18.-22.3: Mediterranean, with Grimaldi Lines, from Salerno via Athens

22.3-27.3 Middle East, with TheDOCK, Enkindle Global, award winning female entrepreneurs of EcoWave Energy, ECONconcrete++

27.2-3.3: Jordan, with WEF YGL Malak Al-Akiely. Visits to Sahara Forest Project and Scatec Solar. Jordan-Norway Business Forum “Discovering Future Partnerships” and to the seminar “Women’s Economic Empowerment in Jordan: Reflecting Norway’s Experience”. Takes place as part of the state visit of Their Majesties King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway – first official Norwegian Royal visit to the Middle East.

Keynotes & meetings; Women in Business Arabia, Business Professional Women Association, Nadia Shaheen, Jordan Economic Forum. Dinner in Dead Sea with Managing Director of Business Professional Women Association

3-7.3: Saudi Arabia; EV roadtrip from Amman/Jordan with passengers, through interesting areas and projects, coordinated with support from Saudi Embassy U.S. & Minister of Culture. Via Haditha border, Qurayyat-Tabuk-Amala-AlUla-Buraydah-Riyadh-Al Khobar-Al Hafouf to Dubai. Changemakers to be announced shortly, but includes a.o. the female founder of Blue Abaya, 1st Saudi travel blog.

8.3: Dubai: EXPO2020 Launch event, linked to a focus on Women in Mobility. Partner meetings following launch. Evening speech for Water Alliance, and facilitator for Dubai International Academy on Water: The Global Passport. Breakfast keynote for Nordic Business Council. Car rides with VOLT Mobility/EV Roadtrip Dubai 2020 (Generation EHQ), Thea Thorsheim/Teach Me Now and MindShift, VC investing in female entrepreneurs. Soroptimist International Gulf Dubai Club.

12-13.3: UAE, follow up meetings linked to Expo2020; ocean and women empowerment focus

Editor´s note: Journey disrupted and ended 13 March 2020, due to lockdown - before reaching Mumbai. The Maritime SheEO conference was organized November 2020 as a virtual equality conference, on TOOL Aquarium´s virtual platform. Today it is the world´s biggest equality conference within the global maritime sector.)

13-19.3: Ocean transport Dubai-Mumbai, by Transworld container ship

19-21.3: Mumbai. Chairing the Maritime SHE-EO / SHE Conference. Guest of organizers. Onboarding speakers & CNN Hero Afroz Shah. Interviews with key global leaders including MDs of INTERTANKO, International Chamber of Shipping, Equality lead in IMO, Chair of Shipping Corporation of India, MD of World Maritime University

21/22.3 Return travel – to Istanbul/Athens/Europe (pending Corona development)

24-27.3 Europe: Roadtrip by hydrogen car through Italy, Austria, Switzerland, France, Germany, Denmark (final route TBC)

Interviews with a.o. The Canvas, Green Squadron, ZeBox, Green SeaGuard, Plastic Odyssey, H2MOBILITY, NOW, Air Liquide, ENGIE, NEL Hydrogen, Monaco Propeller Club, Energy Observer, Vattenfall.

Background for the Journey:

The Oslo-Mumbai journey is a result of Liodden ́s efforts connecting equality pioneers in Norway and India from October 2018. Europe’s biggest equality conference – the SHE Conference – has through this work formed a collaboration with Indian change agent Sanjam Gupta. This resulted in India being selected as first international country for piloting the innovative new business gender equality index – SHE Index – and it was rolled out across the Indian maritime community Q2 2019.

This brings SHE Conference to Mumbai, as the first international pilot through Maritime SHE-EO. The conferences take place 5 and 20 March 2020. These initiatives are backed by UN Global Compact, Norwegian and Indian authorities, Microsoft and EY globally, and a number of other partners in various ways; including the IMO – International Maritime Organization, International Chamber of Shipping, DP World, Maersk and others.

As a result of the bilateral collaboration of India-Norway, Liodden is set up as chair for the Mumbai conference, and standing by her flight-free pledge, she seeks ways to travel to Mumbai in March.

While originating primarily out of the need for finding alternative means of transportation, Liodden wants to use this journey to invite change makers to join as co-travelers sharing portions of the journey, as well as their story.

In a world where negative news and polarization dominates, the journey will share inspiration, hope and optimism through individual role models and frontrunners – across borders and cultures – as a contrast. We will show how we can swing the pendulum, if we all work and collaborate together. We will expose that people are more similar than different. We seek change agents who support gender equality and diversity.

Ocean, TOOL, The Ocean Opportunity Lab

About the initiator:

Birgit Liodden has been a change agent for next generation & sustainable leadership in the maritime industry for more than a decade. She is the former Director of top 5 leading shipping exhibitions Nor-Shipping, Founder & SG of YoungShip International, and Project Manager Global Systems & Processes at Wilh.Wilhelmsen.

Liodden holds executive board roles in The Norwegian Society for Sea Rescue, RS Sea Rescue Academy, TheFactory fintech hub, GreenStat energy investment company & Bellona Environmental Foundation, and is the Working Chair of the Norwegian Organization for Electric Boats. She serve on the Executive Committee of Polytechnic Association (Norway) and the advisory boards of REV Ocean, SHE Community and Southern Africa Norway Association. She is also a popular speaker & moderator, having moderated a.o. President Barack Obama, several Norwegian Ministers and corporate executives. She has received a number of awards & rankings for her leadership in Norway and abroad, and first leader who fronted #MeToo globally in shipping. In 2018, she was among the 150 top finalists for World Economic Forum ́s Young Global Leaders.

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