Penta’s journey towards Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

10 May, 2023

This story was written by Eleonora Brugiolo, Penta Foundation HR Specialist and Equality Officer, Italy. It is taken from Penta’s 2022 Annual Social Report.

Penta’s journey towards Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) started in 2020, but it was in 2022 that we saw a turning point with the launch of the Gender Equality Plan and the creation of the Gender Equality working group, which introduced the role of Equality Officer.

In this position, I’ve had the privilege of supporting my colleagues at Penta Foundation in understanding our long-term vision and objectives for DEI, which go beyond the goal of achieving gender equality. Our Plan provides us with a clear sense of direction; I have helped the staff realise that, for something significant for them as individuals to occur, they have to be part of this change.

In its 5-year strategy, Penta set 5 objectives to pursue through science and education: to nurture, to develop, to deliver, to collaborate and to inspire. Well, I believe that these can also be used to describe our objectives from a DEI perspective. We strive to nurture a shared culture of real acceptance and inclusion; to develop the path towards DEI through concrete and engaging initiatives; to deliver results to the staff in terms of continuous improvement of the work environment; to collaborate with organisations and institutions which have the same view, in order to maximise Penta’s social impact; and finally, to inspire other organisations and communities to work to improve their DEI practices.

All of this may sound idealistic, but we have already conducted activities that engage all Penta staff in this effort. For instance, we launched a workshop to help staff recognise and overcome biases that affect effective communication. The aim is to create a shared, inclusive culture through common definitions, language, and attention to diversity. No matter how many policies Penta implements to improve our employees’ wellbeing, nothing can match the effect and value of a collective effort to embrace the topics of diversity and inclusion.

Inclusion, team spirit, responsibility and transparency are our guiding principles: the research that we promote is global, independent and inclusive, therefore it is imperative that these features are reflected within our organisation. For me as a staff member, the work towards DEI has increased my sense of belonging and sharing and has given concrete shape to principles that value every worker as an individual. As Equality Officer, I believe that promoting an inclusive work culture does not mean flattening diversity but giving everyone the same opportunities while embracing their unique qualities.

I am honoured to be Penta Foundation’s Equality Officer and hope to continue setting new standards for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Penta!