Shaping Global Conversation


In a year that has underscored the need for greater women’s leadership and parity in decision making, the Reykjavík Global Forum – Women Leaders is one of the very few platforms where hundreds of Leaders from all sectors, including politics, business, civil society, academia, the arts, and media, can Power, Together to build back a more resilient and equal society.

Live, online

9 – 11TH November

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The Forum relies on a high level and ambassadorial committee of Co-Chairs. The committee is made up of leading figures from academia, civil Society, business, and politics who identify with the mission of the Reykjavík Global Forum have been actively supporting women to express their voices. Co-Chairs are nominated by the Women Political Leaders Board and approved by the Icelandic Steering Committee.

Co-chairs advise on the Forum program and its activities, thereby pushing conversations out of the comfort zone to explore ways to respond to societal issues.

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  • Rebeca Grynspan

    Secretary-General, Secretaria General Iberoamericana (SEGIB)

  • Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

    Executive Director, UN Women

  • Obiageli ”Oby” Ezekwesili

    Public Policy Expert and Senior Economic Adviser, AEDPI

  • Michelle Nunn

    President and CEO, CARE

  • Katrín Jakobsdóttir

    Prime Minister of Iceland

  • Atsushi Sunami

    President, The Sasakawa Peace Foundation

Featured Conversationists

At the Forum, one is not an attendee, but an invited leader; someone who can hear what is being said, can add value to and share the passion for the conversation: a Conversationist.

... The Forum is the platform where leaders discuss and share ideas and solutions. To achieve that, everyone needs to participate and enter the conversation ...
Featured Conversationists
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  • Founder, Avandis Consulting

  • Amanda Nguyen

    CEO and Founder, Rise

  • Amy Weaver

    President, Chief Legal Officer, Salesforce

  • Ann Cairns

    Vice-Chairman, Mastercard

  • Belén Garijo

    Deputy CEO; Vice Chair of the Executive Board; CEO, Healthcare; CEO Designate, Merck KGaA Darmstadt, Germany

  • Caroline Wozniacki

    Former Professional Tennis Player

  • Cheryl Philips

    Member, National Assembly of the Republic of South Africa

  • Christy Tanner

    Executive Vice-President and General Manager of CBS News Digital, CBS Corporation

  • Dalia Grybauskaitè

    President of Lithuania (2009-2019), Chair Emerita of the Council of Women World Leaders (2014-2019), Member of the Council of Women World Leaders

  • Diane Wang

    Founder and CEO, Chairwoman of the APEC Women’s Leadership Forum,

  • Hillary Clinton

    67th United States Secretary of State (2009-2013)

  • Hiltrud D. Werner

    Member, Board of Management responsible for Integrity and Legal Affairs, Volkswagen AG

  • José Manuel Barroso

    President, European Commission (2004-2014), Prime Minister, Portugal (2002-2004), Chairman, Goldman Sachs International, Member, WPL Global Advisory Board

  • Joyce Banda

    President, Malawi (2012-2014)

  • Julia Gillard

    Prime Minister, Australia (2010-2013), Chair, Global Institute for Women’s Leadership

  • Laura Chinchilla Miranda

    President, Costa Rica (2010-2014)

  • Marianne Amssoms

    CEO, Carpe mutatio

  • Mark Pollock

    Explorer and Speaker, The Mark Pollock Trust

  • Michelle Harrison

    Global CEO, Kantar Public

  • Oby Ezekwesili

    Senior Economic Adviser, The Africa Economic Development Policy Initiative (AEDPI), Co-Founder, #BringBackOurGirls

Going digital, ensuring safety

Because the opportunity to advance women’s leadership in this symbolic and challenging year cannot be underestimated and neither can our commitment to creating an inclusive convening moment, we have made the decision to transform the Forum to ensure global conversations.

While we will all miss the icy wind and Northern Lights of Iceland, this decision allows us to ensure the safety of the Reykjavík Global Forum community.

Together with our Icelandic co-hosts, we are thrilled to announce the opportunity “to be together in Iceland” in spirit while we cannot in person. This will be made possible through the “Reykjavík Satellites”; small, local gatherings co-hosted by Icelandic embassies and consulates around the world. These events, which will adhere to local health and safety guidelines, will all have the same programme and play an important part in the wider, global programme.

Conversationists of the digital gathering, will be joined by participants of the Reykjavík Satellites and jointly contribute to the overall Forum outcome: the Reykjavik Manual.

New to the Forum this year, the Manual will gather the insights, best practices, and solutions offered by women leaders around the world in a practical guide on how to ‘build back better’.


The Reykjavík Global Forum takes place in Iceland. For many years Iceland has been the global champion in the WEF’s Global Gender Gap Report which examines disparities between men and women in terms of political empowerment, economic opportunity, education and health.

milestones that matter:
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Women gain national suffrage and the right to hold office
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The first woman elected to the Icelandic Parliament
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Equal Pay Act approved by the Parliament
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Women nationwide take a day off on October 24
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Equality Act approved and the Equaliry Council is founded
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The first nationally elected female president in the world
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The Women’s Alliance runs for Parliament
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Equal rights of women and men stated in the constitution
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Equal rights of women and men of parental leave
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Companies are obliged to have 40% women or men on board

4 things that made the difference

Equal Parental Leave

9 Months (3 for women, 3 for men and 3 to share). A combination of guaranteed daycare and parental leave allows women to continue working post-children. Over several years, men taking parental leave is up to 90%.

Equal Pay Law

On 1 June 2017, Iceland passed an instrumental law requiring proof from all Icelandic companies that they are paying men and women equally for doing the same job.

Strong Female Role Models and Women in Power

47% of MP’s are women, over 65% of members in local governments are women; over 65% of university students of women; 80% of women participate in the labour market.

Consensus From Left to Right

Icelandic women have, in most cases, agreed upon the greatest gender equality steps taken, across party lines.