The UK welcomes the handover of the International Working Group (IWG) on Women & Sport, the world’s largest network dedicated to advancing gender equality in sport and physical activity.
The handover from New Zealand takes place during Birmingham 2022 which is the first major multi-sport event in history to award more medals to women than men. The hosting baton will be for the quadrennial period of 2022-2026, as a partnership between UK Sport, Sport England and the SRA who are working closely with key organisations such as the Women’s Sport Trust, Women In Sport and the Women’s Sport Collective. The 9th IWG World Conference will take place in Birmingham in four years’ time.
CEO of UK Sport, Sally Munday, said: “The handover of the IWG from New Zealand to the UK is an opportunity that goes far beyond the four years that we will host it.
“The important thing is that we are consciously making decisions which nurture a strong legacy for gender equality globally. Being part of the world’s largest network that is devoted to achieving gender equality in sport means we all have a responsibility to inspire positive change. The impact that this change will have on the next generation of sport is in our hands.
“What we have witnessed both at the women’s Euros and over the last week here in Birmingham reflects what an exciting time this is for female athletes and all of us involved in sports administration to be promoting change. The scope for progress in this space is immense and I am looking forward to seeing women and girls in sport thrive in the future.”
Established in Brighton in 1994, the IWG has since travelled the world and continues to play a key role in building a global network, using insight and research to advance gender equality on an international scale. The UK has been a long-standing supporter of the IWG’s work and the opportunity to host it offers scope to strengthen connections, increase learning, and share positive change across global sport.
UK Sport has expertise and high ambitions in three areas: women in leadership, women in coaching and hosting brilliant women’s sporting events that inspire positive change. Over the next four years of the IWG in the UK, there is an emphasis on collaboration, alignment of organisations around a common goal and a sharing of insight.
The ambitions of inspiring positive change within the high-sport performance community and growing a thriving sporting system are both championed by the IWG. A thriving sporting system in which gender equality, diversity and inclusivity are central, aligns closely with UK Sport’s mission to create the ‘greatest decade’. Ultimately, recognising the fundamental role that women and girls play in the progression of sport is essential to facilitating change in the UK and abroad.