EWiRE has set up a focused initiative to highlight the women working within the electric vehicle sector.
The aim is to spread EWiRE’s diversity and development targets into the electric and autonomous vehicle sector, and help women in the sector find their voice and promote their value.
The group is composed of approximately 25 key players from the electric and autonomous vehicle sector. They meet on a regular basis to share ideas and discuss key challenges and opportunities in the EV space, from both a market and a women’s point of view.
Through our work with EWIRE, we’ve identified key actions that companies can do to address the gender disparity and encourage women to stay in the sector and move up into more senior positions. These include:
Find a way to measure diversity and ensure people see and think about it. Until people look at the raw figures, they just won’t see the problems.
Address recruitment practices to ensure they are as fair as possible.
Look at ways to provide more flexibility. We need to stop looking at jobs in terms of set boundaries, and instead look at the outcomes. By increasing flexibility, senior positions would become more achievable for a great number of people.
However, it’s not just about the organisations, it is important that women build their external profiles too. EWiRE helps in this by supporting women to put themselves forward for speaking slots, chairing and interviews and providing help in building their online brand. You can read the paper we launched underlining the role of women as drivers of change in the energy transition here.
If you would like to be involved, or find out more information about the next meetings and actions, you can contact Rachel Hayes, EWiRE founder.
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Olly manages a wide variety of complex projects. He has developed a strong knowledge…
Regen has produced a selection of case studies from inspirational women from across the clean energy sector. Read their stories to find out more about their career histories, including the successes and failures they have faced.
Project duration: June 2015- current
Robyn Lucas – Head of data science, Open Energi
A remarkable woman who is passionate about building a smart, flexible energy system for the future as well as encouraging more women into science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) roles.
Mareike Schmidt – Energy service manager, Bristol County Council
A visionary woman who has spearheaded Bristol City Council’s highly successful European Local Energy Assistance (ELENA) programme, while also championing the role of women in the UK renewable energy sector.
Adriana Laguna – Low carbon technologies & external engagement senior manager, UK Power Networks
A gifted engineer and leader, Adriana Laguna uses her unique combination of industry know-how and policy development experience to drive innovation in energy distribution and to help bridge the gap between technical experts and decision makers.
A steering group of influential women keep our EWiRE network and overall programme on track, with two formal steering group meetings per year.
All of our steering group help to integrate the work of our network with others to ensure that we add value.
Cheryl Hiles, director, Energy Capital
As director at Energy Capital, Cheryl is driving forward the delivery of the Regional Energy Strategy and energy devolution ask, to ensure the West Midlands meets its clean growth, climate change and local industrial strategy goals.
Prior to this, Cheryl was the sector director for energy and environment at Pell Frischmann design engineering consultancy, where she developed their business strategy and grew the profile and impact of the company’s work in these sectors.
Bernice Roberts, director and principal environmental planner, The Landmark Practice
Bernice is a Director of The Landmark Practice, where she heads up the planning team and is responsible for all renewable energy output. She has led on planning and EIA developments in a variety of renewables sectors, including wind, solar and energy from waste schemes across England and Wales. She has won the RTPI Environmental Planning and Protection Award, in recognition of her work to deliver the Bristol Port Company’s wind turbines, and also contributes to training for planners, developers and community groups, and under and post graduate students. Bernice is a firm advocate of equality in the workplace, demonstrated by Landmark’s preponderance of energetic female consultants (plus equally valued male colleagues!) and of ensuring career progression and a fair work life balance for all staff.
Liz Dunn, partner, Burges Salmon
Liz Dunn is a Planning Partner at Burges Salmon, specialising in renewable energy. Chambers 2014 says she is respected throughout the field for her extensive expertise in renewables projects. Sources praise her “attention to detail, quick turnaround, and ability to get to the heart of the matter quickly and give sound advice.” Liz started her career working in the theatre and retrained as a solicitor when her children were young. She is one of four planning partners at Burges Salmon with a team of twelve lawyers. Liz advises on a wide range of renewables projects, consenting the first offshore wind farm under the Planning Act regime for nationally significant infrastructure projects and advising extensively on onshore wind, biomass and anaerobic digestion. She is a member of Renewable UK’s Cymru strategy group and regularly speaks on consenting issues for renewables projects.
Maria Connolly, partner, TLT
Maria is head of TLT’s Energy and Renewables team and is rated by Legal 500 as outstanding. Maria has significant expertise in renewable energy projects, particularly in relation to wind, solar PV, hydro, AD and biomass. She acts for lenders and developers in relation to property matters, including acquisitions of existing renewable energy projects, drafting bespoke documentation, negotiation of exclusivity agreements, option agreements and leases and undertaking full due diligence. Maria has acted in relation to over 100 large scale wind projects and was at the forefront of advising developers and lenders in relation to solar PV, including one of the first to market with plain English solar PV documentation, which has been rolled out to thousands of installations nationally, as well as dealing with some of the largest solar arrays in the UK. Maria is independently recognised as an expert in energy & natural resources: renewables & alternative energy by Chambers UK, a guide to the legal profession.
Dr Nina Skorupska, chief executive, REA
Dr Nina Skorupska has over 25 years in the Energy Industry; Nina’s career began as a fuel specialist, but moved quickly onto power stations, which led to her being appointed as the first female Power Station Manager of RWE npower. Since that time, she has led a UK Energy Trading team for RWE, followed by being RWE npower’s Director of Technology Services. She has worked in Germany as RWE Group’s Director of Performance Improvement, where she went on to save them over 2 bn Euros on operating costs. From May 2010 until the end of 2012, as Chief Technology Officer, she was an executive member of the Board of Essent N.V., the Netherlands’ largest energy company, and responsible for Essent’s Generation portfolio and new energy developments. In 2012, Nina became a Supervisory Board member for DNV GL Energy in the Netherlands, a position that she continues to enjoy today. In July 2013, Nina took the helm of the Renewable Energy Association as its Chief Executive. In 2014, Nina joined the Board of Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) and has recently been voted onto the Board of the European Renewable Energies Foundation (EREF).
Sue Barr, environment and external affairs manager, OpenHydro
Sue Barr is the External Affairs Manager for OpenHydro, a tidal technology developer. Following an early career in marine science supporting the offshore oil and gas industry, Sue joined a team of scientific advisors to the UK Government working on the first offshore wind arrays. Her work included early marine spatial planning, revision of maritime legislation, project development and advisory roles to UK Ministers on the first wave and tidal energy projects in UK waters. With 14 years’ experience of developing both the offshore wind energy and wet renewables industries, Sue has led on project development, policy, lobbying and the emergence of a marine renewables industry, both in the UK and internationally. A senior executive in OpenHydro and a qualified marine scientist, Sue represents OpenHydro externally, working with customers and regulators on managing project development. She plays a key role in driving renewable industry policy in the marine area, in the UK and internationally. A director of the largest tidal energy project in the UK, Sue also contributes to several national and international working groups on marine renewable energy policy, site selection, project development, and regulatory control of marine renewable projects.
Sonia McCorquodale Cruise, commercial managing director, Welsh Water
Sonia is commercial managing director at Welsh Water and managing director of Welsh Water Infrastructure, an asset investment company and Cambrian Utilities, a business retail company. She is responsible for the groups’ renewable energy portfolio, business retail proposition in the competitive market and developing new commercial proposition for the business in water, waste and energy.
Sonia has worked in the energy sector for 20 years in the UK and internationally. She has extensive experience in commercial negotiations, commodity trading, risk management and origination across multiple sectors including physical commodities, power and renewable energy.
She has project managed large teams and led on a range of large scale infrastructure projects divestments, acquisitions, debt finance transactions across biomass, biofuels, waste, AD and solar.
Louise Wilson, co-founder and director, Abundance
Louise Wilson is a co-founder and joint MD of Abundance, which provides long-term debt capital to infrastructure projects and regular capital and income to investors. With a current focus on renewables, both heat and energy, and on efficiency, Abundance lets individuals, both local and national, invest directly in specific projects of their choice from as little as £5. Abundance has launched fund-raisings for 12 projects for a total of £11.5m.
Tanya Davies, head of development, Innogy Renewables (UK) Ltd
Tanya leads a team developing wind projects throughout the UK. Tanya is a Chartered Town Planner with nearly 20 year’s experience who started her career in minerals and waste planning and moved into the wind industry in 2003. Since then she has primarily worked in Development, initially developing her own projects and then managing the Welsh and now UK teams. Under her leadership, the innogy team were the first to submit and consent onshore wind farms through the NSIP process and the only utility to successfully win CfD’s in the first auction.
Tanya is passionate about maximising the opportunities for local businesses during wind farm construction and operation and is also keen to see more women in senior roles within the industry. She has a son and lives in South Wales, where she is often found on the beach walking her dog.
Regen has set up a mentoring programme to support women in the clean energy industry to progress their careers.
Building personal and strong bonds with senior women and men across the sector, mentoring matches the experience of one person with the potential of another.
Project duration: ongoing
The EWiRE mentoring programme has been hugely popular and running since 2015. It specifically focuses on middle managers in the clean energy sector looking to move up to senior management positions and those currently working in senior management looking to move into board positions.
A new round was launched over the Autumn 2019 and is ongoing to continue our work to see more women lead the transition to a clean, decentralised and flexible energy system. See full details of the EWiRE network here.
We recently ran three mentor-matching events, successfully pairing over 40 women with mentors. Feedback from participants has been overwhelmingly positive.
“Having a mentor has been a really useful experience for me in a number of ways. It has been invaluable having someone to talk to outside of my company, as a third party opinion. My mentor has been great as she is friendly and approachable, and we have similar backgrounds and career trajectories. Because of this she has been able to give me relevant advice and guidance which has had a direct and positive impact on my career progression. I would highly recommend the mentoring scheme to anyone who is looking for the opportunity to develop themselves and wish to benefit from the experience of someone else.”
– Holly Pretious, marketing and communications manager, Marine Energy Wales
To learn more about the programme and to apply to be either a mentor or a mentee, download our EWIRE Mentoring Guide. The programme lasts for 12 months and should consist of a minimum of six sessions.
This initiative feeds into EWiRE’s wider 2020 objectives to increase the visibility and profile of women working in the clean energy sector, and to support network participants to develop the skills to enable them to take positions on boards and in senior management across the sector.
We need all the talents in our society involved if we are going to tackle a challenge as big as achieving net zero.
“Mentoring is a great way of sharing experiences, giving a different perspective and opening doors to networks that often seem closed.”
– Keith Anderson, CEO, Scottish Power
If you are interested in signing up as a mentor or mentee please get in touch. We welcome both male and female mentors, and female mentees. We will be running more matching events in the coming months, sign up to the network to be notified when these will take place.
Contact Rachel Hayes, founder of the EWiRE network, at firstname.lastname@example.org to join the network and become a mentor/mentee.
People on this project
Kerry is a project manager at Regen who has a broad range of experience,…