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Bridging the Expectation Gap


13 November 2012

Abu Dhabi, UAE | Park Rotana Hotel

About this Workshop


Oil and gas companies are faced today with the so-called “two-humped demographics curve”, with a high population of high expertise seniors soon to leave while onboarding more junior staff to replace them. It is also now well known that women represent a growing part of this crew change and will play a major role, and not only in the energy sector—more than 70% of university graduates being women in the UAE is the best testimony of this change, and the country’s vision will be shared to show how it builds on these new talents.

Generations or gender differences are only the visible branches of the diversity tree, whose roots support a wealth of talents and breadth of expectations. Capturing these expectations is key to attract, develop, and retain, as well as acknowledging experienced staff’s motivations to ensure proper knowledge transfer and transition. In a fast changing world, some progress has been made already to adapt and accelerate the development and career of the new diverse generations. Sharing how it is perceived in reality, in the field, the core of the oil industry, is also key to continuous improvement: what are the obstacles that have been overcome, what are the remaining ones, especially in the GCC?

Business management also comes with aspiration to develop a multi-skilled, competent workforce that will be fully committed to efficiently manage and optimise more and more complex projects, in a safe and harm-free environment. During the breakout session, we will consider the roles of the different stakeholders in bridging those expectations, from the role of the employee and education to the one of leadership and policy. Building on the former sessions, Q&A and success stories will be shared through the Executive Roundtable.

The main objectives of this workshop are to discuss the required strategies to ensure business growth and sustainability while helping everyone to reach their full potential, and to promote ideas and visions of feasible professional success for all.

In summary, the scope and aim of this workshop will be to discuss the following:

  • Painting the diversity challenge, the two-hump demographics curve challenge, and the need to accelerate development of the graduates, with potential for women.
  • Highlighting the different expectations between old and new generations and investigating how to bridge them through the eyes and roles of all stakeholders.
  • Women in leadership in the oil and gas industry—challenges and success stories.
  • How governments, companies, and professional organisations address those challenges and make sure they retain the talents they developed. What are the lessons learnt and new strategies to be developed?
  • The role of education and professional learning to prepare to a diverse work environment in the petroleum Industry.

Visa Information

SPE Middle East, North Africa and India will assist in providing a visa invitation letter, upon request in writing, to confirmed registrants after receiving full payment of registration fees. Visa invitation letters take five days to issue from the date of request and it is the delegate's responsibility to obtain their own visa. SPE cannot issue the visa nor can we guarantee it will be obtained.


Workshop Guidelines


One (1) day of informal discussions prompted by selected keynote presentations and discussions. Workshops maximise the exchange of ideas among attendees and presenters through brief technical presentations followed by extended Q&A periods. Focused topics attract an informed audience eager to discuss issues critical to advancing both technology and best practices. The majority of the presentations are in the form of case studies, highlighting engineering achievements, and lessons learnt. In order to stimulate frank discussion, no proceedings are published and the press is not invited to attend.


  • Proceedings will not be published; therefore, formal papers, and handouts are not expected from speakers.
  • Work in progress, new ideas and interesting projects are sought.
  • Professionally-prepared visual aids are not required; handwritten view graphs are entirely acceptable.
  • Note-taking by participants is encouraged.


Registrations will be accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis. The Steering Committee encourages attendance from those who can contribute to the workshop most effectively either in discussions or with posters. A mix of attendees in terms of geographic origin, companies, and disciplines will be encouraged.

Workshop Deliverables

  • The Steering Committee will appoint a “scribe” to record the discussions and to produce the full workshop report for SPE.
  • This report will be circulated to all attendees as the workshop deliverable within 4–6 weeks following the workshop. The copyright of the report is with SPE.
  • PowerPoint presentation materials will be posted on a specific SPE URL address after the workshop Provision of the materials by the speakers will signify their permission for SPE to do so.


In keeping with ATW objectives and the SPE mission, commercialism in posters or presentations will not be permitted. Company logos must be limited to the title slide and used only to indicate the affiliation of the presenter and others involved in the work.

Attendance Certificate

All attendees will receive an attendance certificate attesting to their participation in the workshop. This certificate will be provided in exchange for a completed Workshop Questionnaire.

Continuing Education Units

Attendees at this workshop qualify for SPE Continuing Education Units (CEU) at the rate of 0.1 CEU per hour of the workshop.