Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alison Honour, has received a prestigious international award in recognition of her pioneering leadership that empowers, encourages, and inspires future leaders.

Professor Honour has received a Women Economic Forum (WEF) award for Women of the Decade. It is given to women who through their expertise and leadership show a distinctive voice and vision to inspire the next generation of leaders. The awards celebrate inspiring women and men worldwide, across all walks of life, to encourage greater leadership, enterprise and collective consciousness toward creating a better world.

Professor Honour said: “I am delighted to receive this award which celebrates and supports the work of women in all walks of life, around the world. Every woman attending the global conference or receiving an award would have had one thing in common: we all at some point in our careers experienced challenges due to being a woman.

“Goal number five in the United Nations list of sustainable Development Goals, a blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, is to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. It calls for ‘the full participation of women and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making’. However, in Higher Education in the UK it is well understood that less than 30% of Professors are women and of these less than 2% are Women from Black, Asian or other ethnicities. Of the top 200 performing global universities less than a quarter are currently led by VCs who are women. The annual increase of women VCs compared to male VCs is still less than 2% per year globally which means that it will take at least 20 years past the UN Sustainable Development Goals target date of 2030 to reach a position of equity for women as VCs in global Higher Education.

“Education, and equal access to education, is one of the most powerful and important means we have to achieve gender equality and support social mobility. Universities do so much good work to widen access to higher education but to have true equality in the sector more women need to be progressing into leadership roles.”

Professor Alison Honour with fellow winners of the WEF Awards
Professor Alison Honour (far right) with fellow winners at the WEF Awards

The award was presented on Monday 30 October at the Women Economic Forum and G100 in London.

The WEF is a global conference platform brought by the ALL Ladies League (ALL) to foster empowering conversations, connections and collaborations among women in ALL walks of life. It hopes to influence and shape global policies in order to extend more support for women globally.

The WEF has recently launched 100 recommendations that will be presented to the G20 leaders, UN bodies, governments and stakeholders globally to make gender equality a priority for all in this decade.

Return to news hub