GIOF Annual Meeting • May 18–19, 2023
World's most impacting DEI Success Stories


Experience one-on-one inspirational sessions with some of the brightest DEI minds and advocates in each of the regions where GIOF’s Annual Meeting is taking place in person. During the Annual Meeting of the Global Inclusion Online Forum 2023, we will have one interview at each location to set the tone for the event and to inspire our online audience to continue their journey with us on an exciting 30-hour global DEI marathon.

Interviewees can have backgrounds as public DEI advocates, government officials, corporate C-suites, journalists, artists, etc.

Interview topics:

  • Practices of advancing DEI in different fields

  • Personal success stories igniting DEI progress

  • Raising awareness of discrimination against underrepresented communities

Key Topics

Disability Inclusion

Only about half of people with disabilities in the UK are employed, according to the Office of National Statistics. In the USA, the jobless rate for those with a disability is about twice as high as the rate for those without a disability, according to the US Department of Labor. In the EU, 51 percent of people with disabilities are employed compared to 75 percent of people without disabilities, according to the European Commission. For Australia, the numbers are almost the same, with 53 percent employment rate for people with disabilities versus 83 percent for those without, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. It is important to acknowledge the fact that regardless of employment status, people with disabilities are discriminated against throughout their lives. This injustice must change.

Racial and Ethnic Inclusion

Organizations all around the globe have started long-term programs to support the black community after George Floyd’s murder. While we already see some results of those programs, it is critical to understand exactly where we are on this matter. For example, in the UK the employment rate for ethnic minorities is only 62.8 percent compared to an employment rate of 75.6 percent white workers, according to the McGregor-Smith Review. On the other side of the planet in Singapore, the variation of nationalities living and working makes its workplaces positively diverse in terms of ethnicity; however, Singapore does not have laws against workplace discrimination, as do many other countries around the world. It is also important to remember local demographics, as in different parts of the world discriminated minorities vary in ethnicity.

Gender Equality

Gender equality is still not a reality and according to the Global Gender Gap Report of 2021, it will take another 100 years to achieve gender equality based on the current rate of progress. South Africa’s Constitution is one of the most progressive in the world, but despite providing for the right to equality, women are often discriminated against in male-dominated workplaces. Australia has made significant progress towards gender equality; however, gender gaps in the Australian workforce are still prevalent, including pay gaps even in female-dominated areas. Experts from many other countries continue to discuss the need for change in regard to gender equality. While the need is evident, it may not be obvious for many how such change can be achieved. Join this session to learn more about practical solutions for resolving gender inequality.

LGBTQ+ Inclusion

According to research by Catalyst, one fifth of LGBTQ+ Americans have experienced discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity when applying for jobs. Research by LinkedIn in the UK suggests that the income of average LGBTQ+ employees in that country is 16 percent less than their straight counterparts. And while in the above countries there is an active movement to make workplaces more inclusive for LGBTQ+ people, many nations criminalize even discussing the issue, such as some Middle Eastern, African or Asian countries. In this section, you will learn how to better recruit, retain, develop, and professionally advance LGBTQ+ employees around the world.

Inclusive Hiring, Promotion, and Retention Practices

Corporations identified as more diverse and inclusive are 35 percent more likely to outperform their competitors (McKinsey). Moreover, diverse companies are 70 percent more likely to capture new markets (HBR) and are 87 percent better at making decisions (People Management). Moreover, companies that emphasize DEI produce a happier, more fulfilled workforce. In fact, over 80 percent of respondents globally indicate diversity and inclusion is important for them when choosing an employer, according to Deloitte. In this session, you will learn about inclusive hiring, retention and promotion practices that you can strategically implement within your organization.

Mental Health

According to the Work Health Survey carried out by Mental Health America, most employees continually experience signs of burnout and a lack of the support needed to manage stress. It is also estimated that untreated mental health conditions cost Australian workplaces approximately $10.9 billion per year, according to an ABS study. In the UK, the value added to the economy by employees who have or have had mental health problems is as high as £225 billion per year, which equals 12.1 percent of the UK’s total GDP, according to the Mental Health Foundation. In South Africa, around 27 percent of people suffer from depression; it is also estimated that employee absenteeism on account of depression costs the South African economy approximately R19 billion annually, according to Webber Wentzel. It is vital to take specific steps to protect employees’ mental health from common issues like burnout or depression. Join this session to learn what you can do to improve mental health within your practice.


Despite the growing number of DEI executives, many businesses have been slow to adopt accessibility strategies. If you’re interested in learning how to make your business more accessible, this section is for you. Mass adoption of digital, fully remote, or hybrid positions during the COVID pandemic has increased promotion of accessibility and inclusion. As the world is transitioning towards a new reality, it is important to make sense of the progress and upcoming challenges that corporations face on their journey to increasing employee accessibility and inclusion. Accommodating diverse needs can vary depending on the objectives and resources of your organization. Workplace accessibility is not just about physical accessibility but also about ensuring there are no barriers to the talent pool. It is important for companies to have a strategy for how to make their workplace accessible to those with disabilities and other needs.

Refugee Inclusion

The latest humanitarian crisis driven by the Russian invasion of Ukraine has raised awareness regarding the need for governmental and private enterprises to be prepared for accommodating refugees. According to UNHCR, there are at least 89 million people who had to flee their homes worldwide and the majority of them struggle to find work, despite often being highly qualified. Tent’s data revealed that unemployment for refugees in the UK is up to 82 percent. Recently, some major players like IKEA have started refugee inclusion programs because they saw refugee assistance as a part of their mission. This demonstrates a recent change in attitude toward refugees, as in 2019 countries such as Poland had a 60 percent negative perception of refugees among Polish citizens. Tune in to find out what actions global leaders are taking to facilitate an inclusive and welcoming environment for forcibly displaced people from all over the world.

Interested in speaking for us?

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