APRIL 2019, CCXXVI
No. CCXXVI; APRIL 19, 2019
THIS ISSUE’S HIGHLIGHTS:
I. WHY ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IS KEY TO INCREASING BUSINESS GROWTH
II. STUBBORN GENDER PAY GAP IN UK WIDENS DESPITE TRANSPARENCY
III. QUOTAS FOR THE U.S.? NO LONGER IMPOSSIBLE!
IV. WOMEN’S CRITICAL ROLE IN ADDRESSING CLIMATE CHANGE
1. WHY ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IS KEY TO INCREASING BUSINESS GROWTH
“Artificial intelligence will impact 100 percent of jobs in the next 5-7 years,” said IBM CEO Ginny Rometty to underscore AI’s role in transforming work as we know it and to emphasize the need for women in the workforce to be aware of and to be prepared for this transition.
IBM is using AI in human resources functions, including identifying employees who are unsatisfied in their jobs or are underperforming as well as uncovering potential in a worker that a manager may not have noticed. In an interview with CNBC (4/3/19), Rometty said that this AI tool enables IBM to deploy employees to jobs that better use their skills.
In the competitive search for talent, IBM is using AI as a retention and talent development strategy. The company claims that AI can detect with 95% accuracy which workers are considering quitting their jobs. With this information, the company works to better engage such employees so as to enable them to stay and be part of IBM’s growth.
How other companies are using AI, as well as the emerging technology of blockchain, to foster business development, is one of the key topics to be discussed at the 2019 Global Summit of Women taking place in Basel, Switzerland on July 4-6. In a special Plenary session, corporate executives, innovators, and entrepreneurs will share what women executives and entrepreneurs need to know as to how to utilize emerging technologies in their companies.
Julie Linn Teigland, Managing Partner of EY Germany, Austria and Switzerland, will share the findings of a new report on AI’s impact; Patama Chantaruck, Vice President for Indochina and Managing Director of IBM Thailand, will discuss how women entrepreneurs can use these technological tools to expand their businesses while opening up new avenues for growth; Kamales Lardi, President of Women in Blockchain Switzerland, will impart practical knowledge regarding blockchain technology development and implementation while emphasizing the need for more women to be involved in the area of blockchain to ensure diversity across the industry; and Maria Rios, CEO of Nation Waste, Inc, will present on how she has used AI and blockchain to grow her US-based waste removal business.
Don’t be left behind! Join these women business leaders and 1,000 others at the 2019 Global Summit of Women in Switzerland. For more information on the program and to see who else will be presenting at the leading forum for women in business and government globally, visit www.globewomen.org/globalsummit .
2. STUBBORN GENDER PAY GAP IN UK WIDENS DESPITE TRANSPARENCY
Despite the U.K.’s 2-year old Gender Pay Gap regulations requiring companies with over 250 employees to publish the difference in the pay of their male and female employees, the 2019 report showed the pay gap has widened since the regulations took effect. Overall, men were paid 11.8% more than women as of April 2019, compared to a difference of 8.6% in the previous year. The most egregious offender was low-cost air carrier Ryanair with a 64 % reported pay gap, based they say on too few women pilots.
One reason for the lack of progress could be the regulation’s reliance on public shaming to lessen the gap as opposed to punitive measures. Currently, there are no penalties for U.K. companies with large gender pay gaps, in contrast to France where a 2019 law will fine companies which do not correct their gender pay gap. The French law gives companies up to three years to arrive at pay parity or face a fine equal to 1% of their total payroll. (Source: “Gender pay gap widens at half of U.K. firms,” CNBC, April 5, 2019)
France’s Minister of Labor Muriel Penicaud, the architect of the French gender pay gap reporting law, will share her initiative at the 2019 Global Summit of Women in Basel, Switzerland on July 4-6, 2019. In the plenary session on this issue, Minister Penicaud will be joined by the Hon. Thorsteinn Viglundsson, former Minister for Social Affairs and Equality, who authored the benchmarking Icelandic law that became a model for other countries.
While five countries now have pay equity laws that basically require transparency in compensation (Iceland, U.K., France, Germany, Australia), there are also companies that have conducted internal audits to root out pay inequities. One such company is Intel and Julie Ann Overcash, Vice President for Compensation and Benefits at Intel, will discuss their ongoing efforts. Lastly, there is a global coalition, now chaired by Switzerland, to combat the pay gap that afflicts women worldwide, and Sylvie Durrer (Director of Switzerland’s Federal Office of Gender Equality) will outline its strategies.
To hear from these three leaders who have led innovative efforts to reduce the gender pay gap, be a part of the 2019 Global Summit of Women. Register today at www.globewomen.org/globalsummit
3. QUOTAS FOR THE U.S.? NO LONGER IMPOSSIBLE!
Globally, quotas for women on corporate boards have been adopted by 25 countries, ranging from Norway to Malaysia to Panama and even to the UAE, though the majority are based in Europe. Until recently, there has always been a perception that the U.S. would not undertake this initiative given corporate phobia of government regulations. However, in September 2018, the state of California enacted a landmark law that requires public companies headquartered in California to have at least one woman on their board of directors by the end of 2019 and other states are poised to follow California’s lead.
At the beginning of April, the House of Representatives in the State of Illinois voted to require all publicly held companies in the state to have at least one woman and one African-American on the company’s corporate board by 2021. While not yet enacted into law as it requires passage in the State Senate, the bill could have an impact on some major companies based in the state, such as Boeing, Archer Daniels Midland, Allstate and McDonald’s.
A third state, New Jersey, has also had a bill entered into floor debate and four other states – Colorado, Massachusetts, Ohio and Pennsylvania — have also moved the needle by adopting non-binding resolutions that encourage board diversity.
What difference does gender diversity on a board make? That question will be addressed at the 2019 Global Summit of Women in Basel, Switzerland by a panel of board directors from different countries, who will share their perspectives on whether or not gender ensures board diversity. Participating on the panel to be moderated by Summit President Irene Natividad are Ann Sherry, Executive Chair of Carnival Australia; Mai Chen, Board Director of the Bank of New Zealand; Namane Magau, Chair of the Board of NTP based in South Africa; Henryka Bochinarz, Board Director of Orange Polska in Poland; and Renata Jungo Brugger, a member of the Management Board of Daimler AG in Germany.
See a video of Summit President Natividad discussing the need for quotas during a CNN Money interview: [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UOyDI-y7cM[/embedyt]
4. WOMEN’S CRITICAL ROLE IN ADDRESSING CLIMATE CHANGE
Under the theme of “Women: Redefining Success,” the 2019 Global Summit of Women posits that care of the world’s limited resources is a component of what women consider as important in defining economic success not just for themselves but for their communities. As the majority of the world’s farmers, they are conscious of the growing impact of climate change on agricultural productivity.
In a recent report, the UN stated that climate change impacts men and women differently and presented reasons why women have a pivotal role in mitigating its impact. The report contends that empowering women means more effective climate solutions and that women are vital to building climate resilience in communities. When provided with the same access to resources as men, women in the agricultural labor force can increase their yields by 20-30%, reducing world hunger by up to 17%, according to the UN. Women are also more willing to adapt to environmental changes since their family lives are impacted. They are usually first responders in community responses to natural disasters and contribute to recovery by addressing the needs of their families and strengthening community building. (Source: “Five Reasons Why Climate Action Needs Women,” UN, April 5, 2019)
At the 2019 Global Summit of Women, corporations large and small will share their efforts to take action on this global issue. Among them are PepsiCo which has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions given the risks of climate change to its business, and GreenMark Solar, a business whose aim is to create sustainability opportunities by harnessing solar energy. Switzerland gets high marks for its environmental initiatives and Minister Simonetta Sommaruga, whose portfolio includes the environment and energy, will present the country’s innovative approach.
Join the 2019 Summit in Switzerland to lend your voice to this growing movement taking action to address climate change! To see the full Summit program, visit www.globewomen.org/globalsummit.
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2019 GLOBAL SUMMIT OF WOMEN
JULY 4-6, 2O19
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