University of Cambridge > > Homerton CIG Series 2015 - 2016 > Raising awareness and sisterhood: do we still need 1960s' tools for 21st century social change?

Raising awareness and sisterhood: do we still need 1960s' tools for 21st century social change?

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Pamela Burnard.

Gender equality remains a distant goal in the UK. Yes, progress has been made over the last 100 years since the vote, but not nearly as much as any of us would hope for. Notwithstanding the realities for girls and women, the prevailing narrative they hear is “you can be anything you want to be”; a narrative that places responsibility for ‘falling short’ of any potential successes squarely in their hands. But just how useful is it to state that the world is your oyster when systemic (gender) inequality is alive and well? And doesn’t the alternative – considering deeply rooted societal sexism – just lead to disaffection and negativity? Isn’t equality simply an eventuality that will sort itself out? This talk will explore the tensions at the heart of mainstream discussions on gender equality and women’s place in the world and will consider alternatives to accelerating the pace of change – for the benefit of us all.


Hanna is the Founder & CEO of Fearless Futures – a movement of fearless young women’s leadership. Fearless Futures is a social enterprise that works with girls and women in schools, universities and their early careers running innovative leadership development programmes enabling participants to understand and challenge deeply rooted societal sexism, grow their courage and actualise their leadership through peer power.

Daughter to an Algerian mother and a British father, Hanna grew up in Wembley in North West London. Over the last nine years, Hanna has worked for the United Nations, NGOs and the Royal Bank of Scotland, across communications, research and finance roles; and has lived, studied and worked in Israel-Palestine, Italy, USA , Sudan, Syria and the UK. She has a BA in English from the University of Cambridge and an MA in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, with a specialism in Conflict Management. Most recently, Hanna worked in investment banking and her time at RBS saw her focus, outside of infrastructure financing advisory, on bringing about diversity in the workplace. This culminated in her being shortlisted for the Women in the City Future Leader Award and receiving the Deloitte Chartered Banker’s Young Banker of the Year Award for her innovation with respect to this goal. Hanna is an expert in gender and leadership, having dedicated the last six years to researching, living and exploring the literature and practice of creating socially just, empowered and inclusive communities and workplaces. Her belief in the transformative power of education has seen her become Vice-Chair of Governors at the inspiring Viking Primary School. She is also on the Board of Trustees of The Artemis Network and is a Fellow of the RSA .

This talk is part of the Homerton CIG Series 2015 - 2016 series.

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