WEF panel discussion calls to smash stereotypes and unconscious bias

The WEF finished over a week ago but the topics covered by the panel discussion on Women in Economic Decision-Making still hold true. The question is will there be a day when these kind of panels are no longer relevant?

The line up is impressive, and their collective experience vast and deep.

  • Listen to Sheryl Sandberg, COO Facebook, challenge the system.
  • Christine Lagarde, Managing Director, International Monetary Fund (IMF), on how she used to not work Wednesday afternoons when she was working as a lawyer.
  • Drew Faust, President of Harvard
  • Viviane Reding, Commissioner of Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship, European Commission, on new European legislation setting a target of 40% for women on boards of European corporations.
  • Lubna S. Olayan, Deputy Chairperson and CEO, Olayan Financing Company, on how women in Arab world are leading the way.
  • Kevin Kelly CEO, Heidrick & Struggles, moderated by Herminia Ibarra, The Cora Chaired Professor of Leadership and Learning and Professor of Organizational Behaviour, INSEAD

The key points that came out of the discussion are as follows:

  • Gender parity is linked to global competitiveness and economic performance. In recent years, there has been an explosion of academic research confirming this link.
  • Real gains have been made in the number of women in top economic decision-making positions, but we are still far from closing the economic gender gap and progress is slow.
  • Stereotyping and implicit biases continue to impede the advancement of women to top leadership positions in economic decision-making. As more and more women rise to the top, they can “dare to embrace their diversity” and work with their organizations to address these barriers to ensure that diversity is a foundation of success.
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