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Barbara Bian, Neena Gatdula, Selonica Perumal, and Anna Wong on the importance of the Gerety Awards’ all-female jury

PARIS, FRANCE — Women drive the advertising industry’s audience, and the numbers back it up. According to a study by intelligence firm Nielsen. roughly 75% of all consumer decisions will be made or influenced by women by 2028. As the only advertising awards with an all-female jury, the Gerety Awards is in a unique position to answer the question: Is your ad really resonating with your audience?

Since its inaugural event in 2019, the Gerety Awards has set itself apart from other awards shows by having women — and only women — be its arbiters of quality. The idea was to provide a unique perspective through which the advertising industry can be viewed and, in the process, showcase creativity through a more progressive lens. Given the projections by Nielsen, the awards can also be viewed as an effective barometer for audience impact, with the jury itself representing majority of the target audience.

Adobo magazine got in touch with four members of the Gerety Awards’ 2024 jury to get their thoughts on what it means to be a Gerety juror, both on a personal level and for the industry at large:


Barbara Bian, Senior Creative Director at MRM CHINA and East Asia Executive Jury member:

“Being a jury at 2024 Gerety Awards holds significant industry-level and personal importance for me. It marks my 13th year in advertising and my first participation in an all-female jury panel, symbolizing a pivotal shift in the industry’s landscape. The Gerety Awards, being the only global award with a female leadership jury, represents a transformative step towards greater diversity and inclusion.”

“In the pursuit of inclusion and equality in the advertising world, I believe we’ve been engaged in ongoing conversations and efforts globally. However, in Asia, the awareness and implementation of these principles differ significantly. While progress is evident, especially with initiatives like the Gerety Awards, I still see us in the early stages of change. More individuals and platforms need to step up, to drive progress and challenge biases in our industry.”

Neena Gatdula, Partner, Creative Director at Happiness Saigon in Vietnam and Grand Jury member:

“Being part of the Grand Jury at this year’s Gerety Awards is a privilege but also a responsibility. Because of its unique inclusion approach, the task carries more weight in terms of elevating the standards of creative work.”

“We have definitely reached substantial progress in inclusivity, distancing ourselves from the Mad Men narrative. But we must not tire to keep the conversation going as we know gender politics swings in a pendulum. Our role in influencing society as advertisers is huge and we shouldn’t take it for granted. It’s nice to have the Gerety Awards setting an example for the industry to follow.”

Selonica Perumal, CEO at Shift Integrated in Sri Lanka and Grand Jury member:

“The Gerety Awards hold a special place in my heart, not only because they are judged exclusively by women but also because they encapsulate the values I hold dear.”

“Despite the progress made in breaking gender barriers in the world of business, the under-representation of women in creative leadership positions within the advertising sector is a concerning reality. This gap not only limits opportunities for talented female creatives but also hinders the industry’s ability to harness diverse perspectives and storytelling voices.” 

“As the only Sri Lankan on the jury, I am aware of the responsibility that comes with this role. I am committed to bringing a global perspective while also ensuring that the unique cultural and creative contributions of my country are duly recognized and celebrated. This experience represents not only a chance to contribute to the recognition of exceptional work but also a platform to elevate voices that may not always be heard on the international stage.”

Anna Wong, Chief Growth Officer at Dentsu Creative in Hong Kong and East Asia Executive Jury member:

“I think this year’s Gerety Awards continue to signify the progress towards inclusivity within our industry. As we are entering the award season, it’d be interesting to seeif the same campaigns would makethe Gerety winning list compared to the other global award shows. Personally, I’m excited to be joining the fellow female jury to celebrate the work that resonates with genuine consumer insights without any gender biases or stereotypes.”

“I think we’re making some progress as I’m starting to see more marketers recognizing the specific needs of women, and so developing products catered to their needs. But there’s certainly more we could do for the female segment. By ‘doing more,’ I don’t mean advocating for exclusively women-oriented advertisements. Rather, I believe that categories such as automobiles, asset management, properties, etc., should recognize that women constitute a sizable market for them. It’s important to acknowledge women’s needs and motivations regarding driving, wealth growth, and home ownership, which could differ significantly from the general portrayal in the market.”

This year’s Gerety Awards jury has over 200 members across 47 countries, and a Grand Jury comprised of more than 50 women creative leaders from around the world. With the entry deadline coming on April 12, the time is near for women’s voices to once again lead the room.

adobo Magazine is an official media partner of the 2024 Gerety Awards.

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