Mind the (gender) gap! Podcast celebrates extraordinary women moving populations worldwide


Women Who Move Nations: NEC sponsoring new episodes on future of travel on trains, buses, ferries, and trams.

This is the sort of podcast series that we like to hear about on International Women’s Day.

Women Who Move Nations features influential women working in public transport. They reveal how they got to the top of one of the world’s most male-dominated industries in the new Australian podcast episodes.

They work in a sector where just 4% of CEOs are female.

The fortnightly series will share insights on how these leaders from Australia and around the world are overcoming significant challenges. They include dealing with artificial intelligence, building sustainable transport networks, and ensuring communities are safer and more inclusive.

The long-running podcast series is produced by the Public Transport Association Australia New Zealand (PTAANZ) and is sponsored by NEC.

Women Who Move Nations episodes

PTAANZ has released details of the new episodes in the latest series:

• Legendary equality trailblazer Michelle Sheppard, who works as a senior advisor at Victoria’s Department of Transport and Planning. She has worked to raise awareness of the barriers that LGBTIQ+ communities face in the workplace. She’s designed and implemented workplace inclusion programs that have created more diverse workforces and ensured communities feel heard.

• Author and international transport researcher Dr Nicole Kalms is an authority on how cities of the future can be made more female friendly. Kalms is associate professor and director of the XYX Lab at Monash University’s Department of Architecture. Her focus is on devising public transport policies that protect women’s safety.

• Author Veronica Davis is a former director of transportation in Houston, Texas and has delivered over $100 million in projects that primarily benefit Black and Brown communities in areas afflicted by poverty.

Davis features in the first episode of Women Who Moves Nations, released on Friday 8 March. She argues that transportation is one of the most important factors in making lives better. Part of that is getting drivers out of cars – something she says is already happening.

NEC’s Kylie Gorham

NEC involvement

“One of the big trends that we’re seeing is that kids aren’t getting their driver’s licence,” said Davis in the episode. “We really need to be thinking about investing in other modes of transport for them like biking, walking, and public transport because we know that people can thrive if they can access jobs and education.”

NEC senior product manager Kylie Gorham has over 20 years of experience in the transportation industry.

“Knowing that we make the lives of millions of people easier every day is so rewarding,” she said.

“In Australia, while women have historically been pivotal in customer-facing positions within transportation, it’s essential to foster greater inclusion of women in leadership roles such as design consultation and engineering to help develop safer, more accessible transport services the public can depend on.

“Smart transport solutions are improving passenger experiences from ticketing to safety and real time data and we share some amazing insights on the podcast,” Gorham added.

The podcast series is hosted by former PTAANZ chief executive Michelle Batsas, currently the executive director of future mobility at the Department of Transport Victoria.

Dr Gillian Miles, interim chief executive officer at PTAANZ said: “Women Who Move Nations highlights how women are shaping the future of how people move around our cities and towns.

“We hope to inspire future generations of female leaders to consider a career in public transport because our workforce needs to be as diverse as the communities we serve.”

Women Who Move Nations is available on all platforms, including Spotify and Apple.

Podcast guest list (more announced soon)

March 8
Veronica Davis – Author and former director, transportation and drainage operations for the City of Houston, Texas.

March 21
Ishra Baksh – Executive director, strategic insights and transformation, Department of Transport and Main Roads, Queensland

April 4
Dr Nicole Kalms – Director, XYX Lab & associate dean [research] Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture at Monash University

18 April
Mel Barber – Managing Director, NEC New Zealand

17 May
Michelle Sheppard – Senior Adviser, diversity and inclusion for LGBTIQ+ programs, Department of Transport and Planning, Victoria

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