Chicago Booth
HR Summit, 5-7 March

LGBT+ Inclusion: How Diversity Can Attract Talent and Drive Innovation

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Date(s) - 23/11/2017
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm



There is an unquestionable business-case for LGBT+ inclusion in the workplace, but how are these benefits realised? With growing awareness in Hong Kong and the region, notably a landmark appeal in the QT case, the successful bid to host the 2022 Gay Games, and Taiwan’s ruling in favour of same-sex marriage, how can Asia’s World City harness LGBT+ talent?

This evening panel will explore questions including:

What steps can be taken for LGBT+ talent attraction? Which strategies in the workplace can nurture LGBT+ and ally talent to enhance retention? How can technology, including artificial intelligence, tackle recruitment biases and engage with a wider talent pool?

The event will open with a short presentation from Yiu-tung Suen, CUHK’s lead researcher on ‘Hong Kong Public and LGB People’s Attitudes towards LGB-friendly Business Organizations’, then followed by a lively panel discussion with Leonie Valentine, Google, Michael Gold, Economist Intelligence Unit, Peter Reading, EOC and moderated by Christian Tooley, CBRE.


About the speakers

Leonie Valentine is Managing Director, Sales & Operations of Google Hong Kong. She has over 20 years of experience in marketing and sales, and has served as Director of Customer Experience for Asia Pacific at Google for the past two years.

Prior to joining Google, Leonie was Executive Vice President, Customer Service & Operations at CSL Limited. Earlier, she held the position of Chief of Staff for Telstra International Group, and was a member of the Executive Leadership Team charged with managing Telstra Corp’s business growth and assets outside of Australia and New Zealand.

Yiu-tung SUEN (D.Phil. in Sociology, University of Oxford) is Assistant Professor and Graduate Division Head of the Gender Studies Programme, and Associate Director of the Gender Research Centre, at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Prof. Suen is the Founding Director of the Sexualities Research Programme, the first research programme in Hong Kong dedicated to conducting rigorous, independent research on sexuality issues, with a focus on sexual orientation, gender identity, law and social policy.

Michael Gold is an editor in the thought leadership team at The Economist Intelligence Unit, based in Hong Kong. His main areas of focus include Asian social trends and institutions, innovation and technology. He serves as the research head for Pride and Prejudice, The Economist Group’s ongoing global initiative exploring LGBT rights in the workplace. As part of his work in this capacity, he has authored two in-depth white papers based on global executive surveys and speaks extensively on LGBT-related diversity and inclusion topics.

Peter Reading is an international human rights lawyer who has working in the field of human law and advocacy for 18 years in Australia, the United Kingdom, Europe, Commonwealth countries, and most recently in Hong Kong China.

Since November 2012, Peter has been working as Legal Counsel at the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) in Hong Kong. In his role he has been leading the EOC’s Discrimination Law Review project to modernise all the existing discrimination legislation in Hong Kong relating to sex, disability, race and family status. He has also been instrumental in the EOC’s legal work relating to promoting equality for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) groups.  This has included the work relating to introducing LGBTI anti-discrimination legislation, the rights of cohabiting same sex couples, as well as introducing gender recognition legislation for transgender people.


About the moderator

Christian Tooley is a Senior Consulting Analyst with CBRE’s Workplace Strategy team in Hong Kong. His role focuses on partnering with global corporates in various sectors to design strategy and implement effective organisational change. Christian advises firms on how to align their business and real estate objectives through implementing analytics-backed creative solutions focused on enhancing employee experience.

Recently, Christian founded, and now chairs, LGBT+CBRE, Asia’s 1st real estate pride network. Beyond this, he sits on both the CSR and Emerging Leaders Committees at the British Chamber of Commerce Hong Kong.


About the Author