‘Young Women in Investment’ programme paves way for G7 investors’ diversity goal

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A four-week intensive boot camp will be organised for nearly 49 women, to cover a mix of core finance- and investment-management concepts. 

With a view to creating more opportunities in finance and investment management for women, CFA Institute, a global association of investment professionals, has formulated an internship programme focussed on university women studying in select developing markets.

CFA Institute, with the support of the Canadian government has announced a project to advance G7 diversity objectives as part of its three global-development initiatives. The G7 programme has been designed after the CFA Institute Young Women in Investment India-first initiative, which was launched in March to create awareness, instil interest and enable women to view the investment-management industry as a viable, long-term career option. Under this initiative, a four-week intensive in-residence boot camp will be organised for nearly 49 women at AACSB accredited institutes, where a mix of core finance and investment-management industry concepts, business skills-related topics, and soft skills are covered. The boot camp will be followed by paid internships at financial institutions, including DSP BlackRock, Edelweiss, Morningstar, Motilal Oswal, and State Street in major cities, such as Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi-NCR, and Mumbai for a period of three to six months. The initiative has received applications from aspirants from more than 30 tier one, two and three cities.

“The investment-management industry in India is becoming increasingly aware of the importance of having inclusive workplaces, and CFA Institute is taking proactive steps to promote gender diversity. We hope more companies will join us to promote diversity in the investment-management industry,” said Vidhu Shekhar, CFA, country head-India, CFA Institute.

The institutional investors who have pledged to commit resources, expertise and networks to further the G7’s diversity-initiative cause include AIMCo, Allianz, Aviva, CalPERS, CDPQ, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), Generali, Natixis Investment Managers, OMERS, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, OPTrust and PGGM.

“Women constitute 30.5 per cent of the workforce in the top 100 companies in India. Women fund managers in the Indian asset management industry constitute a mere eight per cent of the total fund managers in the country. The finance and investment industry is not restricted to finance students and graduates. We want to encourage more Indian women to consider investment management as a viable, long-term career option,” said Sanjay Padode, secretary, Centre for Developmental Education, a not-for-profit society affiliated to the institute offering the course.

Ravi Raman, chair of the NASSCOM Diversity and Inclusion Steering Committee and a managing director at State Street said, “Diversity of talent is an area of key focus for the asset-management industry.

The industry needs more women, particularly from more diverse educational backgrounds. Attracting young women into the industry is imperative, and programmes such as this, from the CFA Institute, will help build the pool of women talent in the financial sector.”

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