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IGS Establishes Diversity Task Force

A team dedicated to boosting diversity, equality and inclusion in the IGS has been launched.

Led by IGS Secretary General Laura Carbone, the IGS Diversity Task Force aims to raise awareness, improve member empowerment through sharing experiences, promote diversity through education, and grow networking opportunities to expand the circle of influence.

Also involved are founding members Patricia Guerra-Escobar, Viviana Mangraviti, Isabel Perez, Mathilde Riot and Kasia Zamara. Ms Carbone is also leading the overall IGS strategic goal of cultivating a more Representative organization.

Founding Task Force Members – Top: Laura Carbone, Patricia Guerra-Escobar, Viviana Mangraviti; Bottom: Isabel Perez, Mathilde Riot, Kasia Zamara

Ms Carbone said: “The IGS has a diverse body of members and it is vital the Society properly understands and responds to their needs. This is the first time the IGS has had such a task force and it’s long overdue. We invite members to get in touch with us if they would like to find out more and help shape the way we grow diversity in the Society and the industry as a whole.”

The Diversity TF has four main goals:

  • Increase the number of women professionals on the Board of IGS Chapters, Committees and Council by 2026.
  • Increase the number of IGS Keynote addresses presented by women professionals by 2026.
  • Increase the ethnic diversity of key contributors at all IGS events by 2026 (i.e. technical sessions, workshops, panel discussions and in chair positions).
  • Have at least one annual cross-Society event fostering and celebrating women and other minorities in the FedIGS (Federation of International Geo-engineering Societies).

Members will be able to find out more at the Diversity TF’s launch event – a Diversity Breakfast – at the 12th International Conference on Geosynthetics (12th ICG) in September. Sponsored by the IGS Foundation, the session will also be livestreamed so anyone can access it if they cannot attend in person.

Here, panellists Sam Allen, Jorge Zornberg and Danielle Ria Zamara will discuss the Diversity TF’s goals, future perspectives and opportunities. They will also explore the current challenges, for example, increasing the number of women delivering lectures, enhancing representation at senior levels and improving the gender balance of IGS membership; currently fewer than 20% of membership is female.

“Following our inaugural event we invite the wider membership to join the Diversity TF, which we hope in time will become a formal Committee,” said Ms Carbone.

If you would like to join or find out more, contact Ms Carbone at

+++ The IGS Diversity Task Force Breakfast takes place on Tuesday, September 19, at 8am, at the 12th ICG in Rome, Italy. To register to join virtually, click here.


Cover image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay