There is an irony in removing the only woman on our paper currency. Florence Nightingale is to be removed form the £10 note. The Canadian Carney, new Governor of the bank of England has 4 daughters, so we live in hopes. Women dressed as feminists camped on the steps of the Bank of England. http://thewomensroom.org.uk/banknotes
Possible suggestions: Rosalind Franklin, who contributed to the discovery of DNA, suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst were worthy candidates to appear on the notes. Carney said he had put the issue on the agenda of the Bank’s next board meeting on July 17. Ironic in that Award winning Lisa Buckingham is Finance editor at Financial Mail. Christine Largarde, who became IMF by default, has said that had there been fewer Lehman brothers and more Lehman sisters, the financial crash may not have been so acute.
Add to this the shrinking number of CEOs down to 2 or 3, and you can see the trajectory is downwards. It’s not going to take a long time, we are going backwards, as we historically do!
The fewer visible role models we have, the less likely women are to imagine themselves in positions of power and authority. People are often surprised to find that women out-number men in most countries, yet are under represented in the very fields of Science and Technology where Britain needs to catch up to the 21st century.
Nick Langdon, CEO, who won a WISE (women into science engineering and technology) Award in 2012 for corporate leadership said:
“The business case for gender equality is not one of how do we justify the employment of women engineers, but one of why on earth would we preclude considering over 50% of the population and some of the brightest graduates available to UK plc.”
Not sure if that message is getting through.
The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering
This is a summary report issued by Royal Academy of engineers, with regard to the Queen Elizabeth Prize.News Release 26 June 2013. Note the gender neutral wording of The Fellows.
“Inaugural winners of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering receive award from Her Majesty the Queen at a special ceremony at Buckingham Palace. June 25th, London: The five (male) engineers who have been leading lights in the creation of the Internet and the World Wide Web received their award this week from Her Majesty the Queen in front of an audience that included the three (male) leaders of the UK’s main political parties, and two princesses.”
The winners each received a trophy designed by 17 year old Jennifer Leggett. No one from the Women’s Enginieering Society was present.
Prime Minister David Cameron said:
“This is the story of the global economy. People young and old will be inspired by the incredible feats of Britain’s ability to succeed in the global race.”
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:
“We also send a powerful message to budding and experienced engineers across Britain that if you’ve got the skills and good ideas keep going.”
The Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, said:
“the UK is serious about celebrating engineering’s great achievements. It is important to use the Prize to encourage young people into a career in engineering.”
In a recent interview with Christrainers, Professor Jocelyn Bell Burnell said:
There are some horrible statistics surrounding the women who do Science Technology and Engineering, Mathematics degrees in Scotland. Of those women, 72% leave the field compared to only 48% of men. At the same time the ICT, Energy and Green industries are all saying, “Look, we’re heading up for an enormous skill shortage in the very near future.”
So the Country can’t afford that wastage; to lose a large chunk of its talent. Somehow they need to keep those women.
Yet only 6 months ago when abroad our PM said speaking of sub-Saharan countries;
“where the potential and perspective of women are locked out of the decisions that shape a society, that society remains stunted and underachieving”.
CityA.M. Justine Greening 19th December 2012
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