Advancing Gender Equality In Australian Wine

A new study aims to review current efforts, understand the state of gender equality, and identify strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for progress in the grape and wine sector.

This collaborative effort – with Australian Grape & Wine’s Diversity, Equality and Inclusion in Wine (DEIW) Committee and funded by Wine Australia – will be undertaken by Charles Sturt University and the University of New South Wales.

The research team will engage wine and grape sector stakeholders to identify recommendations and develop a practical toolkit for all businesses and sector organisations, translating best practices and innovative ideas for gender equality, into actionable steps.

Wine Australia Chief Executive Officer Dr Martin Cole said the study will help the sector tap the depth of diversity, across the breadth of the sector’s value chain.

“Achieving long term sector profitability, resilience and sustainability means we must have the best people at the table. A vibrant future demands we look to broaden the expertise, experience and perspectives of those at decision-making tables across the value chain,” Dr Cole said.

Gender equality and diversity were identified by the sector as a priority through recent consultation for the One Grape & Wine Sector Plan.

“This research project will build on efforts made by the sector in recent years, recognising the need to progress these, providing evidence-based support for ongoing improvement,” Dr. Cole said. “Our goal is to equip the sector with practical resources to be more inclusive, fostering equality and diversity to strengthen business and sector performance.”

The research project is the result of Australian Grape & Wine’s Diversity, Equality and Inclusion in Wine (DEIW) Committee working together with Wine Australia to identify opportunities to help the Australian grape and wine sector implement equity and inclusion outcomes.

Australian Grape & Wine DEIW Committee Chair, Ali Laslett said the grape and wine sector was a significant employer in regional areas and had shown commitment to increasing gender equality.

“Promoting gender equality aligns with the strategic priorities of many primary industries. The DEIW Committee identified several initiatives in our workplan, and we are delighted that our recommendation to provide practical resources for all businesses within the sector will be realised through this project. Our sector’s future success is built on practices that support and retain a diverse workforce” Ms Laslett said.

Wine Australia conducted a competitive tender process to identify a research partner with expertise in gender equality and developing practical solutions for the sector. Australian Grape & Wine’s DEIW Committee were involved in the selection process, which determined the Charles Sturt University and University of NSW collaboration as the successful team to undertake the project.

Charles Sturt University Associate Professor Larissa Bamberry said the research team had extensive experience exploring gender equity in the military, public sector and male-dominated trades, delivering high-impact reports and strategic solutions for gender equity.

“Our experience working with women in non-traditional roles across various industries informs our effective solutions for gender equity within the wine sector,” Associate Professor Bamberry said.

The project team will work with an experienced sector-led advisory group throughout the study.

Wine Australia is seeking expressions of interest for four additional members with the following credentials:

  • one woman and one man under 30 years of age, with at least two years full-time experience in any role within the Australian grape and wine sector.
  • two individuals of any age and gender with substantial experience in viticulture and vineyard operations from a small to medium enterprise, ideally located in NSW, ACT, Victoria, WA, Tasmania or Queensland.

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