This economic think tank aims to help women integrate and evolve in the financial sector in the Principality.

Promoting women in the financial sphere is the ambitious project of the Monaco Women in Finance Institute think tank, officially launched on 15 September.

At the origin of this think tank is Patricia Cressot, head of development in Africa for the company Rosemont International, and Johanna Damar, lifestyle management director in Monaco. Both created the digital platform Sowl Initiative to promote the inclusion of women and female entrepreneurship.

Wanting to go even further, they decided in 2020 to found this think tank: a “reservoir of knowledge” that would bring together the private sector, the institutional sector and the academic sector. They were joined by the inter-ministerial delegate for women’s rights, Céline Cottalorda, and also by experts Andrea Calabrò and Laurence Vanin.

For Patricia Cressot, this project started from a simple but alarming observation: in France, in 2021, only 7% of women have access to the financial sector in their professional lives, and only 6% of them hold management positions, according to a study by Heidrick & Struggles. However, Patricia Cressot believes that women have a lot to contribute to companies, such as creativity, diplomacy and a sense of initiative.

Beyond the “imposter syndrome” that many employees feel at the idea of obtaining such promotions, Patricia Cressot is categorical: it is the glass ceiling that blocks the development process.

Patricia Cressot strives towards the integration of women in the world of finance © Camille Esteve

Objective: to integrate women into the world of finance

Helping and accompanying female professionals who are confronted with this obstacle is therefore one of the missions of this new think tank. But not only: the aim is also to introduce women to the world of finance and entrepreneurship, including those who would never have considered it. Patricia Cressot adds that the terrain in Monaco is more than favourable: “Monaco has a population that allows for a real intellectual synthesis, but also a desire to make things happen”.

But how do you go about it in practice? The Monaco Women in Finance Institute is developing around four pillars: the responsible economy, women’s entrepreneurship, sustainable development and FinTech[1].

A fifth axis should soon be added: the human factor. A parameter which, for Patricia Cressot, is particularly important: “If we are involved in sustainable development, that’s fantastic, but if we are not aware of what we are doing or our actions, we cannot be sustainable in our own actions.

In practice, it is through workshops and conferences that the Monaco Women in Finance Institute intends to raise awareness, at least initially. The next conference will take place in mid-October, on the theme of the energy transition.

But Patricia Cressot does not close the door on other developments to continue her work: “Nothing is static. We are in the age of women! You have to be patient and know how to navigate the challenges. We must not seek confrontation”.

For more information, visit the official MWF website.


[1] Innovative companies that use digital, mobile and artificial intelligence technologies to deliver financial services more efficiently and at lower cost. Source: www.latribune.fr