Living in: San Francisco, USA
Jane Sloane is the director of the Women’s Empowerment Program at The Asia Foundation. She provides intellectual and programmatic leadership for The Asia Foundation’s programs to empower women and advance gender equality in Asia. Jane oversees a team in Washington and works with the foundation's 18 country offices on a combination of approaches designed to influence policy and legal change as well as to support community led strategies and solutions to achieve transformative changes to advance women’s empowerment and gender equality in the region.
Jane was previously Vice President of Programs at Global Fund for Women, an organisation that uses its powerful networks to find, fund, and amplify the work of women who are building social movements that are challenging the status quo and working to transform systems and economies.
Jane has also worked as Vice President of Development with Women’s World Banking in New York and prior to this she was Executive Director of International Women’s Development Agency in Australia, supporting women’s rights organisations and movements across Asia and the Pacific. In this role, she led an Asia Pacific Breakthrough women, faith and development initiative that generated $1.2 billion in new funds for women and girls in the region.
Jane holds a master’s degree in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of Sydney and a BA (Hons) from the University of Adelaide. She is an advisory board member of the Centre for Women, Peace and Security at the London School of Economics and is a Patron of Marie Stopes International.
Jane’s human rights and public policy work has been recognized by a number of awards and fellowships including a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Adelaide, an Advance Foundation Global Ambassadors Award; an Asia Pacific Business Women’s Council Woman of Distinction Award; a Churchill Fellowship to improve Humanitarian Emergency Response Models for Australia and the region; an Endeavour Fellowship focused on increasing Pacific women’s political participation; a Vietnam Women’s Union Humanitarian Medal and a Vincent Fairfax Ethics in Leadership Fellowship.
I’ve spent years responding to the impact of inequality in its many forms, including addressing issues based on gender, race, culture, ability, age, sexual orientation and geography. This approach has seen me working at the front line with grassroots organisations and at the policy level with governments and research institutions. The work of being an activist practitioner is often isolating, and leadership itself can be lonely if you don’t have a tribe of like-minded people with whom you can safely share ideas and issues.
To be an Atlantic Fellow at the Inequalities Institute at LSE means entry to a world of intellectual giants and global change makers and I seek to inhabit that world. In my head, I already do. I’ve helped to advance women’s human rights through my various roles, and now I want to step up the engagement to a broader level that goes beyond advocating for rights to addressing the root causes of inequality. In doing this I hope to draw on the best research and insights to discern path breaking responses. I’m someone who very naturally sees how to create powerful programs through bringing together different organisations, leaders and forces in partnership for a common vision.
This Fellowship provides the opportunity to dream and act big in the service of the vision set for this Fellowship – we are expected to change the world and we need to be up for the challenge. I’m up for it and I want it mightily.
In my life, I finally have a sense of my own power. I want to use that power fully, and to mentor and support others to do the same. I want to say ‘yes’ to risk-taking and change, and to influence the design and delivery of policies and programs that affect populations in countries and communities across the globe. I’ve been exposed to many situations, from spending time with Syrian women who have fled ISIS, to being with families in refugee camps in Lebanon to supporting women climate refugees relocating from the Carteret Islands due to rising sea levels. I want to be in an environment where there is the time and space to consider questions of ‘what’s really going down here’ and what are the most helpful ways to see these situations and to respond.
Finally, and importantly, I’m a storyteller and artist as much as an activist. I weave the narratives and experiences of my life into my writing, mentoring, public speaking, drawing, dancing and visioning. I will bring my creative being and activist self to this fellowship in the service of creating something so much greater than the sum of its parts."