a curious Yankee in Europe's court

blog about living in Europe, and Italy

Best Q&A anywhere on the planet today: Laura Liswood

Posted on the February 2nd, 2010

In a question and answer interview at Davos, Der Spiegel online talked to Laura Liswood about the gender gap (“Men Who Have Daughters Tend to See Better” Feb 2, 2010).  Liswood is the founder of the Council of World Women Leaders.

All of the answers are super, but my favorite: Question — why are so few women running countries and big companies?

I think in most cases it is not that men don’t want women to make a career. Most of the dynamics between dominant and non-dominant group members happens unconsciously. I’ve written a book on that topic called “The Loudest Duck.” It talks about the question of where we get our images about what a leader is, what a woman is, what other groups are. Our parents teach us, our teachers, our religion, experiences. I remember talking to the first female president of Iceland, Vigdís Finnbogadóttir. She was president for 16 years. After she had been in office for eight years children in Iceland thought that only women could be president.

Great quote from Liswood’s website: “There’s no such thing as a glass ceiling for women, it’s just a thick layer of men.”

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A Q&A with Sarah

Posted on the January 27th, 2010

One of the youngest guests at the World Economic Forum this week is 18-year-old Sarah, from Sri Lanka. Sarah is one of  six young community activists chosen to go to Davos as part of the program, British Council Global Changemakers.

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