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Diversity, inclusion and belonging – supporting the agenda in the post-pandemic workplace


05 Jan 2021




It is well known that organisations that embrace diversity and inclusion deliver better results, increase profits and are more innovative. Nevertheless, high-level intentions by EU institutions and companies’ boards are not always being translated into real progress. Attacks against minorities, discrimination and hate speech unfortunately remain a reality in many EU member states, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only set back the progress.

Over the years, the EU has enacted many laws against discrimination on the grounds of sex, age, religion or belief, racial or ethnic origin, disability or sexual orientation. In order to give a fresh impetus to gender equality, the European Commission has announced in March 2020 its five-year gender equality strategy. As one of the first deliverables of the Strategy, the EC will propose binding pay transparency measures by the end of 2020. In September 2020, the Commission presented an EU action plan against racism for the next five years and is meant to present its new disability strategy in 2021. And in November 2020, the Commission presented the first-ever EU Strategy for LGBTIQ equality.

However, relying on legislation is far from enough – organisational culture changes and proactive leadership are essential in creating environment where everyone feels they belong, are valued and can live up to their full potential in the workplace. Diversity and inclusion should not be seen just as an HR concern and companies must learn how to move beyond tokenism – a symbolic effort to appear inclusive.

ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants), PwC and the EBRD are inviting you to join a lively discussion on how to address the complex issue of diversity in organisations and make sure that the COVID-19 pandemic does not widen the inequality gap in the workplace.

Draft agenda

11.00 Welcome by Helen Brand OBE, Chief Executive of ACCA

11.10 Keynote speech – MEP Samira Rafaela 

11.20 Keynote speech – Silvan Agius, Cabinet Expert, Cabinet of the Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli

11.30 Panel discussion moderated by Clive Webb, ACCA

  • Vinciane Istace, partner and Diversity & Inclusion leader for PwC Luxembourg
  • Anna Ludwinek, Liaison Manager, Eurofound
  • Sarah Cheyne, Global Head Talent Experience, Inclusion and Analytics, Adecco
  • Catherine Naughton, Director, European Disability Forum 
  • Chuck Stephens, Global Head of Inclusion, Diversity and Belonging at

12.20 Concluding remarks, Barbara Rambousek, EBRD Director, Gender & Economic Inclusion

12.30 end