Thursday 11 October 2018


Rugby Europe and World Rugby are organising the first Women’s Rugby International Leadership Forum between the 2nd and 4th of November 2018, in the city of San Lorenzo del Escorial, close to Madrid, Spain.

The purpose and outcome of this meeting is: To enhance the development of current and potential female leaders, to educate and encourage advocates of change within unions to support the development of female leaders and to draft an action plan to develop female leaders and role models in Rugby Europe and across Unions.
Rugby Europe is welcoming participants that can identify themselves in one of these following target groups: 

Group 1: Women who are strong domestic leaders and are already well placed in boards, executive committees in their national federations / union

Group 2: Female sports administrators and identified talents at executive level of their rugby federation who have backing of their board as future leaders.

 Group 3: Advocates of change at Board level who seek to develop the women’s game within unions and Rugby Europe. Include Rugby Europe Board (male or female)

If you are in one of these groups and you wish to participate in the Forum, please contact Jose Gorrotxategui: [email protected] to register to the forum: 
Registration Conditions and details: 
  • Participants not representing Rugby Europe member Unions will have to cover their own travel expenses and pay a Conference Fee of 355€.
  • The Conference Fee includes accommodation from November 2 to Sunday 4. 
  • The conference Fee includes dinner on November 2nd, breakfast lunch and dinner for November 3 and Breakfast on November 4th. 
  • Rugby Europe will not provide any financial support for participants that are not officially nominated by a Union Member of Rugby Europe.  
  • Rugby Europe will review individual all nominations. Rugby Europe will reserve the right to refuse candidates if they do not comply with the "target groups” description.
  • The conference will be in English. Translation will not be available. 
Conference Programme: 

Day 1               Evening : Arrival of the participants and registration.

Dinner – Networking 

Day 2

08.45   FER-Spanish Rugby Union official welcome


9-9.45 Key Note one – KATIE SADLIER – WORLD RUGBY

  • World Rugby Strategy and how is it being implemented around the world.

10-11 Workshop 1


  • The Women’s Game in Europe 

11.15 – 12.15  Key Note two : Leader’s Panel

Experiences of female leaders: Breaking gender barriers and stereotypes in and outside of sport  

Personal experiences breaking gender barriers

Their story : How they did it

What challenges do they continue to face – personally and within sport

 12.15-13 Lunch

13– 14 Workshop 2

What are the barriers to women as leaders and how to tackle them - AMANDA BENNETT , Director FAIR PLAY

Identifying barriers and removing them



The importance of Diversity . Why do you need women in leadership positions? 


15.45  - 16.30 Workshop 3 

Developing Diversity  “Diversity in Organisations” - HUIBERT BRANDS – DUTCH OLYMPIC COMMITTEE

16.45 – 17

Key note/workshop wrap up


Networking on Best Practise 

19.00 Dinner

Day 3

                                    9 – 10 Key Note four: Opportunities for the Women’s Game

Intro: Developing the Game through women leadership

Marketing and Commercialisation: Why sponsors support Women’s sport – LYNSEY DOUGLAS ( NIELSEN CONSULTING)

Values, sponsorship,

10.15- 11.15

Workshop 4 : Action Planning: JASON LEWIS – WORLD RUBGY

What, why, when ?

  1. Individual Support – World Rugby Scholarships presentation. 
  2. Union Plans  - What do you need to do as an action                                

Closing speech