One Step Closer to Pioneering Gender Equality in Chess

In a stride towards achieving gender equality in chess, Norway Chess is on the verge of realizing a groundbreaking vision – the creation of an all-female super tournament. With generous financial contribution from Sparebankstiftelsen SR-Bank, and Stavanger municipality, and sponsorship from esteemed businesses like EY and Sparebank 1 SR-Bank, and the Stavanger municipality, this historic event is planned to be held alongside the prestigious Norway Chess tournament in 2024. The organizers want to provide equal prize funds for both tournaments, despite the fact that the overall rating of female players lags behind their male counterparts. This momentous initiative aims to bring attention to women in chess, a historically underrepresented group, and to set a new standard for gender equality in the sport.

“Now, we are closer than ever before and our confidence grows stronger that we can transform our long-cherished dream into a tangible reality. The creation of an all-female super tournament alongside Norway Chess is within our grasp. We owe this incredible progress to the generous support of Sparebankstiftelsen SR-Bank and our esteemed sponsors such as EY, SR-Bank an Stavanger City, whose belief in our vision has propelled us forward. While we have made remarkable strides, a few more sponsors remain to be secured. Once we accomplish that, we can eagerly move forward with signing the world’s most talented female chess players. The anticipation is palpable as we approach this pivotal moment. It will also set a new standard of equality by ensuring that the tournament receives equal prize pool as the Norway Chess tournament. We are determined to leave no stone unturned in making this historic event a success.” – Benedicte Westre Skog, Organizer of Norway Chess, member of FIDE WOM Commission.

The significance of the initiative extends beyond the borders of the tournament. By elevating the visibility and recognition of women in chess, Norway Chess are signaling a new standard for the sport as a whole. It is crucial to acknowledge that talent and potential in chess transcend gender, and equal opportunities for female players should be fostered at every level. By promoting inclusivity, diversity, and equal representation, Norway Chess is sending a resounding message to the chess community and society at large, emphasizing the importance of leveling the playing field and dismantling gender-based barriers.

Norway Chess’s commitment to gender equality is not solely limited to the present; it carries implications for future generations of chess enthusiasts. By empowering young girls and women to pursue their passion for chess with confidence, the tournament serves as a catalyst for inspiring change and fostering greater female participation in the sport. The hope is that the visibility and success of the all-female super tournament will encourage more girls to take up chess and young, female chess players to see that there are more opportunities to be a professional chess player.