WOW – Women of the World

WOW – Women of the World festival celebrates women and girls, and looks at the obstacles that stop them from achieving their potential. 

Around the world, individuals and communities are insisting on the simple proposition that women must have equal rights and asking the question: 'Why is gender equality taking so long to achieve?' Southbank Centre's WOW - Women of the World festival is a global network of festivals which provides a platform for investigating this question.

WOW 2017 speakers included Angela Davis, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Gillian Anderson. We'll be back in London in 2018 with another incredible line-up.

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Tue, 03/21/2017 - 10:33
Listen to audio highlights of Southbank Centre's WOW – Women of the World festival 2017
Fri, 03/10/2017 - 18:05
Gender Politics & Equality
Global Culture & Ethnicity
Award-winning journalist and black feminist Reni writes about class, race, gender and social justice
Fri, 03/10/2017 - 14:34
Two of our Nordic artists and speakers share their thoughts on women’s lives in the Nordic region today
Thu, 03/09/2017 - 12:30
Gender Politics & Equality
Talks & Topics
Read how the Swedish mansplaining hotline caused a domestic stir
Wed, 03/08/2017 - 18:53
Gender Politics & Equality
Global Culture & Ethnicity
The American civil rights advocate and leading scholar shares a few words
Wed, 03/08/2017 - 18:42
Gender Politics & Equality
Politics & History
Will Brexit be good for women, or do they risk losing hard-won rights?
Wed, 03/08/2017 - 16:22
Gender Politics & Equality
Global Culture & Ethnicity
We asked Fatima about the challenges women face, and their hopes for the future
Mon, 03/06/2017 - 17:16
Business & Economics
Gender Politics & Equality
Hear from Melanie Eusebe, founder of the Black British Business Award and executive producer of WOW
Fri, 03/03/2017 - 14:33
Gender Politics & Equality
Talks & Topics
CII's report will be explored in Women's Risks in Life by empowering women to make friends with their future selves
Fri, 03/03/2017 - 11:08
Gender Politics & Equality
Talks & Topics
Read about UBS Unique's initiatives for improving women's lives
Thu, 03/02/2017 - 14:58
Children & Young people
Gender Politics & Equality
See a few top picks for WOW festival 2017 chosen by Southbank Centre’s Youth Ambassadors
Wed, 02/15/2017 - 16:26
Who are the women who represent us in Parliament? What does it take to get elected, and then to hold onto a place in the House?
Wed, 02/15/2017 - 15:20
What does it really take for women to be heard in the workplace? We asked voice coach and RADA in Business tutor, Sheelagh McNamara
Wed, 02/08/2017 - 14:53
Hear disability justice activist Lydia X. Z. Brown discuss how justice for women can become justice for everyone
Mon, 02/06/2017 - 10:31
Hear about some of the things you can look forward to at WOW – Women of the World festival, returning Tuesday 7 – Sunday 12 March
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Many age-old ideas about women have been swept aside - but what does that have to do with men?
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Caitlin Moran talks about new book, Moranifesto
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Kimberlé Crenshaw - tells us what 'intersectionality' is
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
For the first time in history, all five UK and NI poet laureates are women



Southbank Centre Artistic Director Jude Kelly launched WOW – Women of the World in 2010 to mark the centenary of International Women’s Day, as a major global festival that celebrates women and girls and looks at the obstacles they face, where hundreds of women’s stories could be shared, feelings vented, fun had, minds influenced and hearts expanded.

In response to an overwhelming demand Southbank Centre have been fostering a growing global network of festivals. Already in four other countries WOW is scheduled to spread to four more next year, and throughout the same across the UK.

The ethos of WOW is to create a festival for everyone. It is bold and broad-based in its approach, both lively and serious, and feeds the demand to discuss anything and everything. It brings people together from all corners of society - both speakers and audience members - energising and providing the inspiration and tools to make change.

Bloomberg – the global business, financial information and news leader – is the founding supporter of WOW Women of the World festival. Bloomberg’s sponsorship builds on a long history of collaboration across Southbank Centre that encompasses a wide range of art exhibitions, public commissions and literature programmes.

Bloomberg Philanthropies supports charities and non-profit organisations worldwide, including a number of programmes that seek to address the challenges facing women across the globe, from maternal and reproductive health to women’s economic development.

WOW 2017 would not be possible without its generous sponsors and supporters: Bloomberg, UBS, American International Group Inc (AIG), The Chartered Insurance Institute, Aon, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Amal - A Saïd Foundation Project.

Southbank Centre is grateful to its WOW Gamechangers Richard and Rosamund Bernays, Michelle Chuang, Mary Anne Cordeiro, Caroline, Mary and Paul Cronson - the Evelyn Sharp Foundation, Ms Miel de Botton, Katie and Mark Denning, Catherine Petitgas, Lady Jill Shaw Ruddock CBE, Joana and Henrik Schliemann, India and Robert Wardrop and Mercedes Zobel for supporting WOW.

wow 2017 stories

The legendary activist talks about women, race and class in the post-Trump era
Listen to the Nigerian novelist speaking live at Southbank Centre's Women of the World 2017

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Somaliland Bag

Feminist T-Shirt

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