Corporate | 08 March 2017

#women'sday #women@renault

“When I was little I used to play with building sets. And that’s what I do in my job today: I build cars that, I hope, will be appreciated by our customers.”
by Groupe Renault

Christine Genin, chief engineer with Renault-Nissan at the Chennai plant in India.

Christine Genin has been chief engineer with Renault-Nissan in India for around a year and a half now. Her duties here started with production ramp-up for Renault Kwid at the Chennai plant, and she’s now preparing for development of a range of vehicles addressing the Indian market. She heads a team of some sixty people. This is her third international appointment, following a six-month mission in Slovenia on the Twingo 2 project and three years spent in Korea with Renault Samsung Motors.

I hadn’t particularly planned on working in India. But I was eager to get started on a new project, and this was a chance to work with Gérard Detourbet, the mastermind behind Duster and now in charge of the Kwid programme".

explains Christine, who joined Renault on graduating from the INSA school of applied sciences in Lyon, working in production and engineering sectors, still largely male-dominated.


Women often come and see me asking for career advice, and I always find time to talk to them. Basically, I’ll tell them ‘Go for it: sure you can. Just believe in yourself!’.

explains Christine.

Christine is an active member of the Women@Renault programme, which seeks to develop women’s talents and encourage women to join Renault. Her next challenge will be to prepare for extension of the range of vehicles that Renault makes and sells in India.


I’ve always been interested in the sciences, and that’s what guided me in my choice of studies and through my initial career stages. My job today involves interfacing with automotive suppliers. It’s a very outward-looking function.

2017-women's day

             Sihame Boualam, supplier quality performance coordinator at Renault Technocentre

Sihame Boualam has been with Renault, as purchasing quality coordinator for lighting, wiper and engine cooling systems, since 2015. She has audited and helped reshape the quality management systems at around a dozen supplier sites. And she took charge of the training course run by the Purchasing Department on improving the quality of parts. Graduating with broad-based qualifications from the Institut Polytechnique in Grenoble, she started in the field of flow optimization in the sheet metal sector, then shifted to sales and marketing for a while before being appointed, at the age of just 23, project buyer in the light commercial vehicles range, for fuel supply and engine cooling systems. She manages annual purchases totalling €80 million.

it’s important to see how other sectors work, and working with suppliers you gain valuable insights into other ways of working. On gender differences in the workplace, she reckons that “being a woman in a supposedly man’s world is nothing compared with the simple issue of being considered too young. Especially in a position of responsibility in a sector where age and job title still matter a lot. My mantra is to keep an open mind and don’t be afraid to challenge existing norms where needed.”

as Sihame remarks.


When I was a kid I wanted to be a vet or a biology teacher. Then one day I just became fascinated by engines, and that was it! On leaving school I had just one ambition: to work with Renault. So I’m naturally delighted to be doing exactly what I wanted to do: it’s a dream come true.

2017-women's day



Mélanie Hourlier, engine function designer at the Lardy Technical Centre


Mélanie graduated from the Institut Français du Pétrole (IFP), and joined Renault’s Lardy Technical Centre in 2015, after an internship and initial work experience at Renault Sport with a partner company. Her job involves designing software strategies, meaning the programmes that go together to form the “brain” of the engine, controlling things like pollution control.


I step in very early on in the powertrain development project, much like an architect, who needs to design the foundations of a building before it is actually built. That means there’s a lot of freedom and creativity in the design process, which concludes with validation by simulation.

As well as being an engines enthusiast, Mélanie is an avid explorer of completely different worlds, such as dance and deep-sea diving.


Like Christine, Sihame and Mélanie, there are 23,721 women worldwide involved in designing, manufacturing and selling the cars of the future with Groupe Renault.


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