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IWG World Conference and SportNXT join forces in 2022

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A new initiative has been announced between the 8th IWG World Conference on Women & Sport and SportNXT, to connect Oceania’s premier sports leadership gatherings in 2022.

Women in Sport Aotearoa, Ngā Wāhine Hākinakina o Aotearoa (WISPA) and SportNXT have joined forces to announce a unique initiative, as an extension of our friendship across the Tasman.

Together, we are calling out to sports leaders across Australasia, urging them to attend and contribute at both the SportNXT Summit in Australia next month and 8th IWG World Conference on Women & Sport in Aotearoa New Zealand in November.

Rachel Froggatt, Chief Executive of Women in Sport Aotearoa said:

“The hope is that this unique agreement will encourage attendance of senior Australasian sports leaders at each key event, with a view to both sharing our local expertise and learning from the hundreds of global sports leaders expected to attend.”

The inaugural SportNXT Summit will take place in Melbourne from 6-8 April. A new global thought leadership event hosted during the week of the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix 2022, becoming an annual event in the calendar for global sports leaders to create, share and connect.

The 8th IWG World Conference on Women & Sport will take place in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland from 14-17 November. Staged quadrennially and hosted in a new part of the world each time, the IWG World Conference is the world’s largest gathering dedicated to advancing gender equity and equality in sport and physical activity. More than 1,200 leaders are expected to attend, from the International Olympic Committee, World Rugby and more.

The new initiative will see WISPA promote SportNXT in Aotearoa New Zealand over the next few weeks, while SportNXT promotes the IWG World Conference in Australia.

Froggatt will also travel to Melbourne in her capacity as Secretary General of the International Working Group (IWG) on Women & Sport, to speak at SportNXT as part of a thought leadership panel dedicated to women in sport. She will join a moderated conversation that will explore strategies and actions to grow women’s sport, particularly in the wake of COVID-19.

She will be joined on the panel by Sport New Zealand CEO, Raelene Castle ONZM; Director of the Office for Women & Sport (Victorian Government), Sarah Styles; and Tennis Australia Chair, Jayne Hrdlicka. ABC Presenter Catherine Murphy will moderate.

Froggatt said: “The IWG World Conference is being held in Oceania for the first time in 12 years and we are thrilled to have support from the SportNXT team. This is an incredibly important event for the region, given its capacity as a catalyst to drive positive change for women and girls.

But equally, we really admire and support the intent to set-up a permanent annual sports leadership conference in the region through SportNXT. We’re so pleased to see women’s sport featured prominently in the programme this year and we hope, well into the future.”

Along with promoting the IWG World Conference to Australian sports leaders, SportNXT is also looking into ways to be a part of the IWG World Conference in November, with a view to encouraging attendance the following year, at SportNXT 2023.

Bart Campbell, Director of SportNXT said:

“At a time when the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix will be the focus of world sport. It is fitting we host global, regional and domestic leaders, including our colleagues from WISPA, in Melbourne for the inaugural SportNXT summit.

Both events will host an unparalleled line-up of executives and administrators who will no doubt initiate critical thought-leadership and action on sport’s success in the future.

This is a fantastic opportunity to collaborate and shine a light on the benefit of Trans-Tasman engagement. By leveraging each other’s position in the sport sector and supporting one another to attract delegates from hosting nations, the partnership aims to support the outcomes of both events and extend our collective reach and visibility to new audiences.”

The new initiative is an extension of our friendship across the Tasman, established in early 2020. The first programme of activity together took place around UN International Women’s Day 2020, and the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup. Froggatt led a delegation to Melbourne along with CEO of Netball New Zealand, Jennie Wyllie; CEO of Paralympics New Zealand, Fiona Allan, and then-CEO of Triathlon New Zealand, Claire Beard. Allan and Beard, in her new capacity as Head of Women’s Rugby at NZ Rugby, have already confirmed their places on the New Zealand delegation to SportNXT 2022.

About Women in Sport Aotearoa, Ngā Wāhine Hākinakina o Aotearoa (WISPA)
Women in Sport Aotearoa (WISPA) is a charity that exists to transform society through leadership, advocacy and research, ensuring that all women and girls gain equity of opportunity to participate, compete and build careers in play, active recreation and sport in Aotearoa New Zealand. WISPA is the current Secretariat for the International Working Group on Women & Sport 2018-2022 and host of the 8th IWG World Conference on Women & Sport, 14-17 November 2022. The IWG is the world’s largest network dedicated to advancing gender equity and equality in sport and physcial activity, and its quadrennial World Conference is the world’s largest gathering for decision-makers and influencers in this space. It has taken place every four years since 1994, with the next edition being staged in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand. Visit

About SportNXT
SportNXT is an innovative sports thought leadership summit to be hosted annually in Melbourne from April, 2022.  Being the only city in the world to annually host a Formula 1 Grand Prix and a tennis Grand Slam, Melbourne is a perfect backdrop for a global sport business summit. The next decade will see every major sporting event cycle through the Asia-Pacific region and Australia is uniquely placed to play a major role. SportNXT will gather global, regional and domestic leaders from all sectors of the sports industry creating the “Davos of sport”, where global leaders meet to create, share and connect. SportNXT looks forward, identifying threats and opportunities faced by the sports industry. Visit 

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