Agents of Change: Key Takeaways from the Leadership and Diversity Program for Regulators Scholars

Despite recent progress in overall financial inclusion, women in emerging markets continue to have little access to insurance services and climate and disaster risk reduction financing products. In light of these persisting barriers, the InsuResilience Global Partership, together with Access to Insurance Initiative (A2ii), sponsored five “high-potential women” and participant groups from central banks and other regulatory agencies from Zimbabwe, Mauritius, Mexico, Philippines and India to take part in the 2021 Leadership and Diversity Program for Regulators. Offered by the Women’s World Banking and taught by Oxford’s Saïd Business School, the program built on the potential of these women as agents of change to lead the way towards more inclusive insurance policy in their respective countries.

Following the completion of the 16-week programme, the participants were able to reflect on their experiences with key takeaways from the training to promote more gender-inclusive policies in their own countries and enhance their own leadership skills. In their reflections, participants commented that the programme offered a balanced combination of scientific guidance and methodology for policy development and training in management and leadership “soft” skills. Some of the highlighted activities included:

  • Dedicated sessions on policy formulation;
  • Breakout sessions, during which participants received expert guidance to develop and strengthen their policy proposals and share feedback with other groups;
  • Stakeholder identification and management session, identifying strategies and actions to persuade stakeholders to buy into proposed policies;
  • Training in key leadership skills such as active listening, persuasion and effective storytelling.

Moreover, beyond the usefulness of the course for policy development and promotion, according to participants the programme also led to an increased mindfulness of gender equity and strategies to motivate and encourage empowerment within their own teams.

Given the success of the scholarship programme, the InsuResilience Global Partnership and A2ii are committed to supporting another group of high-potential women leaders in 2022, through the enhancement of gender-related activities made possible via the InsuResilience Centre of Excellence on Gender-smart Solutions. More information on the application process will be released in early 2022.