Header image

Recap: Young Women and Green Skills 20.09.2022 15:00-17:00 online

Watch the recording!


On Tuesday, 20.09. 2022, a virtual GFSE workshop took place. Under the title "Young Women and Green Skills", interested parties gathered for a joint exchange of experiences. Outstanding speakers were also attracted to this event.

The event was introduced by GFSE President and former Ambassador MMag. Dr. Irene Giner-Reichl. She sketched a first picture and the contents of the event and emphasized that increasing the involvement of young women in the clean energy sector is very important to advance the energy transition quickly. This includes improving women's education levels, easier access to renewable energy jobs and meaningful participation in decision-making processes at all levels. Women are still highly underrepresented in the energy sector. Too many women are still excluded from this and other sectors, without access to decent, well-paid employment and sound career paths. Women have a substantial potential to contribute to the clean energy transition and their talent is not been utilized well. In the end, she highlighted the aim of this event to enhance the involvement of young women in the field of renewable energy. We want to learn from the experiences of organisations.

In the first presentation, Ms Raphaela Reinfeld-Spadt, Head of Research and Innovation at Energie Burgenland, took us on a journey through the challenges of a regional energy service provider in a rural area in search of suitable and well-qualified women in the green energy segment. Women have different needs than men when it comes to the design and framework conditions of their work. The possibilities for a company to offer good framework conditions for women in this sector are limited. Rather, general and overarching conditions should be considered from a macroeconomic level and appropriate measures to support women in this segment should be sought.

Ms Katharina Pröstler, Gender and Energy Expert at the United Nations and Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) presented UNIDO's vision. Gender mainstreaming, gender markers and gender guidelines should be integrated into the project cycle of the projects as standard. Targeted and more active action is needed at all levels, macro, micro and meso. All studies so far have shown that gender equality leads to higher and faster economic growth. Women should serve as mentors to women. She concluded her presentation by saying that women are the key to a fast and successful clean energy transformation.

The joy and passion for geothermal energy and the wonderful working environment for women were exuded in our third presentation by DI Dr Edith Haslinger. A senior scientist from the Austrian Institute of Technology. Her love for nature and stones was already awakened in her childhood. She pointed out that sometimes it doesn't take more than a wonderful childhood experience, which can then be realised in later professional life. In her presentation, she highlighted the many advantages of geothermal energy and praised the interdisciplinary field of work. She ended by saying that no two days in her professional life are the same and every project she works on is unique. This offers young women a great opportunity to develop and also to be creative and flexible.

Ms DI Beate Zöchmeister took us on a journey to different jobs where women work at Web Windenergie AG. In her presentation, she referred to jobs that are not always the focus when talking about green jobs. She introduced us to a successful wind power project developer and her best legal advisor when it comes to the approval and implementation of wind power plants. She also pointed out that perhaps more important than the education you have is how you interact and communicate with people. From this point of view, it is possible to attract women from different educational backgrounds to green jobs in the energy sector.

The GFSE would like to sincerely thank the speakers for their time and support in making this event a reality. We hope to be able to offer more such events for you in the future and hope that you will join us again in the future.