Panel Discussion: More than a flag: Rainbow Washing & Company Culture

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Panel Discussion: More than a flag: Rainbow Washing & Company Culture

While the topic of diversity and inclusion isn’t new, advancing an inclusive culture at your company all year round is more important today than ever before. Not only is this crucial from a moral stand point, but from a business perspective too. Consumers are taking their business to companies with a proven commitment to D&I all year round - not only during Pride Week - and genuine commitment to D&I is equally important when it comes to employer branding and attracting talent.

We’ve seen that rainbow washing - capitalizing on the LGBTQIA+ community to attract customers and talent - still happens, but what can companies do to avoid this and support this community in a meaningful way?

Join us on 20th October for a panel discussion with Ilona van de Bildt - Sr Digital Transformation Lead at Google, Stéphane Mead - Global Industry Manager at Google, and Oscar Noel - artist, activist, and researcher to discuss this topic further. Anouk Vleugels, Head of TNW Media, will moderate the discussion.Some topics that will be discussed during this session:

  • What is rainbow washing and why is it problematic?
  • How can your company celebrate pride in a way that is not superficial?
  • How can you build an inclusive culture?
  • Examples of initiatives that companies of all sizes can do

Sign up now to find out what you and your company can do to improve your inclusivity culture!


Ilona van de Bildt

Ilona van de Bildt is a Sr Digital Transformation Lead at Google. She is a 2008 alumni of the Utrecht University with a Research Master's degree in Media Studies, with a minor in gender studies. She has been active in the online world ever since, working at Google since July 2016. She is an active ally in Google's PRIDE community, organising and contributing to various corporate PRIDE events throughout the years.

Stéphane Mead

Stephane is a Global Industry Manager at Google, leading Google Travel’s partnership with Stéphane is actively involved in several DEI initiatives, within and outside of Google, through workshops, talks/panels and recruiting. He is also a member of Google's Product Inclusion group which seeks to ensure Google's ecosystem of products and services represent the interests of all users and the communities who use them.

Oscar Noel

Oscar is an artist, activist, and researcher. He is the consultant to ILGA World’s global youth committee and administrative officer to the Global Queer Youth Network. Oscar is an activist who focuses on advancing rights and protections for the transgender and intersex community, developing inclusive LGBT+ inclusive educational content for various audiences, and continued interaction with the political needs of the and the global LGBTI+ community. He recently obtained his Masters Degree in New Media and Digital Culture from the University of Amsterdam where his primary research area was the growing issue of online transphobia and the radicalisation of transphobic persons online.

Anouk Vleugels (moderator)

Anouk Vleugels used to be a tech journalist and is now TNW's Publisher. She's is responsible for the company's overall media strategy and oversees the editorial team.


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