Leadership and Diversity Program for Regulators

Supporting financial regulators to develop policies that close the gender gap in financial inclusion; Building the women’s leadership pipeline in regulatory organizations.

This global leadership program, offered in partnership with the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) and taught by Women’s World Banking and faculty from Oxford University’s Saïd Business School, brings together senior officials from central banks and other regulatory agencies and high-potential women from their respective institutions in a 9-month leadership program.   Each senior official identifies a policy initiative to sponsor at their institution related to serving the women’s market, and will work with their high-potential woman leader to implement it, while simultaneously supporting her professional development during and after the program. Download the brochure to see eligibility requirements, cost, and curriculum.

We invite senior officials to join this unique program for financial regulators at the intersection of leadership development and women’s financial inclusion. Please check back soon for upcoming program dates.

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Why develop inclusive financial regulation?

Policymakers can be game changers for women’s financial inclusion. The Leadership and Diversity Program for Regulators is a nine-month leadership development program that empowers senior officials from central banks and other regulatory agencies in emerging markets with:

1. the skills to create an enabling environment for women’s financial inclusion, and
2. the tools to advance women leaders within their institutions.

Why build diverse regulatory organizations?

In the age of rapid technological change, regulatory agencies must walk the fine line between setting and enforcing inclusive macroeconomic policy while being responsive to disruption in the sector.  In such an environment, only regulatory organizations with strong leadership can succeed.

What will participants do?

The nine-month experience includes ongoing virtual learning and a week-long intensive at Oxford University’s Saïd Business School’s campus.

Each senior official identifies a policy initiative to advance women’s financial inclusion. S/he also selects a high-potential woman leader from within their institution.  The pair works together to design and implement the inclusive finance policy. Senior officials also invest in the woman leader’s professional growth through career mentorship and sponsorship.

Why is this program unique?

The Leadership and Diversity Program for Regulators is the only program for regulators at the intersection of leadership development and women’s financial inclusion. It equips participants with technical and strategic know-how to create policy and leadership skills to affect change. In addition, senior officials gain the tools to sponsor the woman leader, modelling an approach for building a pipeline of gender-diverse talent within the institution.

What will participants gain?

With expertise from Women’s World Banking and Oxford Said Business School’s world-class faculty, participants will gain:

Leadership Skills: Learn core skills such as change management, strategic decision making, influence, negotiation, and feedback.

Financial Inclusion Knowledge: Understand global challenges and best practices in gender-inclusive policy design; explore the opportunities uncovered by analyzing gender-disaggregated data.

A Global Network: Engage in an action learning methodology that leverages peer-to-peer learning and support.

What are the dates for the in-person touch point at Oxford?

Dates for in-person touchpoint at Oxford:  April 30- May 5, 2020

Tuition cost: Fee per institution/pair (USD): $6,000 for non-AFI members and $5,000 for AFI members

Program fee includes tuition and course materials for two (2) participants per institution (senior official and high-potential woman leader). Women’s World Banking will cover housing, curricular materials and most meals during the week in Oxford. Participants must cover all travel and incidental expenses such as flights to the UK, ground transportation, visas, insurance and additional meals.

Women’s World Banking provides limited tuition assistance to partially fund the program fee. Application must be completed for tuition assistance consideration. Email us or more information.

• Senior officials from central banks and other regulatory agencies in emerging markets
• Part of executive/senior management team or leads a regulatory division
• Commitment to development of gender-inclusive policy
• Ability to commit to nine-month long program with multiple virtual and in-person touchpoints
• Proficiency in written and spoken English

Selection criteria for the high-potential woman leader is provided in the application form. Note that the senior official will select the women leader after being accepted into the program.

Who should be applying?

Governors, Deputy Governors and Senior Officials (male or female) from central banks and other financial regulatory agencies (e.g. banking, insurance, microfinance, pensions, etc.) in emerging markets. They should be part of the executive/senior management team or lead a regulatory division and have a commitment to development of gender-inclusive policy. High-potential women leaders do not need to submit an application. Nominees will be confirmed by the senior official following acceptance into the program.

How do I nominate and confirm the high-potential woman leader participant?

Senior officials must select the high-potential woman leader after admittance, but are required to indicate one or more potential nominees on the application form in order to be considered by the admissions committee. Selection criteria for the woman leader are as follows:

  • Mid-level professional, 5 – 10 years of professional experience
  • Capable of being promoted to the next level of leadership or broadening their role significantly
  • Have demonstrated the ability to lead people in the organization
  • Motivated to take on new leadership challenges and opportunities
  • People managers preferred but not required

How is this program unique from other programs?

This is the only program for regulators at the intersection of leadership development and women’s financial inclusion. It equips participants with technical and strategic know-how to create policy and leadership skills to affect change. Modules, such as influencing stakeholders, emotional intelligence and change management will be taught in an interactive setting. In addition, senior officials gain tools to sponsor the woman leader, modelling an approach for building a pipeline of gender-diverse talent within the institution.

What is sponsorship and how is that different from mentoring?

Mentors provide feedback, access to information and help mentees understand what are often referred to as the “unwritten rules for success”. Sponsors do all of that and actively advocate for the person they are sponsoring (called the “protégé”).  This can include facilitating introductions to high level contacts, stretch assignments that can help advance the protégé’s career or actively advocating for opportunities for the protégé in their institution.

What is the time commitment required?

The program will run for 9 months.

Throughout the program there will be virtual touchpoints, assessments, readings, diagnostics, and post-evaluations that may take approximately 4-5 hours a month.

The program will include a week-long in person component in Oxford, UK. This will include day-long sessions that are dedicated to the program, and an evening event, totaling approximately 43 hours.

Participants have the option of attending the AFI Global Policy Forum to present their work in person at a Women’s World Banking event. Alternatively, they may present their work in a virtual session. Tuition does not include in-person participation in the AFI forum.

Who attends the in-person workshop at Oxford?

The executive and high-potential participant from each institution will join the in-person workshop at Oxford. During the week in Oxford they will attend some joint and some parallel learning sessions.

Can I nominate more than one (1) high-potential women for this program?

Each institution is guaranteed space for one (1) high-potential leader to accompany the executive. Upon acceptance to the program, senior officials are welcome to nominate up to two (2) high-potential women leaders to join the program.  A second will be accepted as space will allow. Attendance by more than one high-potential participant will require sponsorship of both women by the senior officials during the program and the involvement of both women in the women’s financial inclusion policy initiative.   Additional fees for the participation of a second high-potential woman leader will apply:  AFI members USD 3,000 / Non-AFI members USD 4,000.

What is the capstone?

The capstone presentation is a report back to peers and faculty on steps taken towards moving the identified financial inclusion policy initiative forward. Participants will have a period of six (6) months after the in-person program at Oxford to make progress on their policy initiative before being asked to report back. The capstone provides an opportunity to showcase any tangible steps taken and receive feedback from peers.

What does the program fee cover?

The program fee includes tuition and course materials for two participants per institution. Women’s World Banking will cover accommodations, breakfast and lunch during the week in Oxford. Participants must cover all travel and incidental expenses such as flights to the UK, ground transportation, visas, insurance, and additional meals.

Are scholarships available?

Tuition assistance to partially fund the program fee is available. Only completed applications will be considered. Women’s World Banking does not offer scholarships to cover travel or other associated costs. Please email us for more information after submitting your application.

Will I receive a certificate?

Yes, you will receive a certificate from Women’s World Banking and Oxford University’s Saïd Business School upon completion of all programmatic components, including the capstone

Are travel and accommodations provided for participants attending the capstone session?

No. Women’s World Banking will only cover accommodations and meals for the classroom training at Oxford.

Is participation at the in-person capstone session required?  Can I attend virtually if I’m unable to secure funds to cover my travel?

Attendance at the in-person capstone meeting is recommended, however alternative arrangements will be made for those who cannot attend in person. Participation in either the in-person or virtual capstone is a requirement for successful program completion.

What types of institutions have participated in the past?

This program is modeled after Women’s World Banking’s flagship global Leadership and Diversity for Innovation Program.  One hundred and forty-four leaders from 53 organizations in 28 countries have participated, including banks, MFIs, NGOs, Fintechs and financial regulators.

About Alliance for Financial Inclusion

Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) is the world leader on financial inclusion policy and regulation. AFI is a member-owned network of over 100 financial inclusion policy-making and regulatory institutions from 90 developing and emerging countries around the world, covering up to 85 percent of the world’s unbanked. AFI promotes and develops evidence-based policy solutions that help improve the lives of an estimated 1.7 billion unbanked, out of which almost 1 billion are women, who do not have access to formal financial services.

About Oxford University’s Saïd Business School

Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford blends the best of new and old. We are a vibrant and innovative business school, but yet deeply embedded in an 800 year old world-class university. We create programmes and ideas that have global impact.  We educate people for successful business careers, and as a community seek to tackle world-scale problems. We deliver cutting-edge programmes and ground-breaking research that transform individuals, organisations, business practice, and society. We seek to be a world-class business school community, embedded in a world-class University, tackling world-scale problems.