Vivian van der Kuil: Come aboard and be part of this interesting world!

The Women’s International Shipping and Trading Association (WISTA) Nederland was established in 2000 and comprises members who work at management level in the Dutch maritime industry. Its aim is to inspire, energise, motivate and educate women in the maritime industry, to increase their competence and empower them in their careers.

ECWO posed questions to WISTA’s board members to find out more about working in the maritime industry and why it is an underrated, yet highly attractive, career option for young women. We also asked the board members to share their role models.



Vivian van der Kuil is a maritime lawyer with her own niche law firm in Amsterdam, together with two other partners. She is also an internal PhD candidate at Erasmus School of Law where her research focusses on the role of classification societies as part of Public and private interests: A new balance: An interdisciplinary research initiative on the role of private actors in safeguarding public interests. Vivian started her career at sea as an officer with the Royal Dutch Navy.

Why is it important to have more women in the maritime industry? 

Let’s rephrase the question; why should there be more women in the maritime industry? Because I cannot think of any reason why women should not be equally represented in this industry. The maritime industry is a dynamic, people-driven industry with lots of new technologies and developments. And in the years to come important steps will need to be taken in respect of, for instance, sustainability. Our way of living is unthinkable without logistics. I strongly advise women to come aboard and become part of this interesting world.

Who is your role model?

Hands down it is Karin Orsel. For me she embodies diversity and inclusivity. She shows that being a woman is by no means a hurdle in becoming what you want and getting where you want to be. She is authentic and therefore a great leadership example. 

More information

The Erasmus Centre for Women and Organisations (ECWO) is committed to women’s continued advancement into leadership positions across multiple sectors – from multinationals and start-ups to not-for-profit organisations. ECWO supports gender-balanced leadership through its management educationresearch and events about gender equality, and by coaching female business leaders. Its strong network leads to women empowerment and gender equality to the benefit of business and society.

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EC for women and organisations , ECWO Storytelling