Published on May 12th, 2017 | by Guest


Inspiration from 3 Women Who Have Changed the World of Architecture and Technology

Analyzing data from 144 countries, the 2016 Global Gender Gap Report ran by the World Economic Forum showed ambiguous results. Out of the countries studied, 68 have increased their overall gender gap while 74 have decreased it. Overall, one could say that things are very, very slowly improving, with ways to go before the gender gap is closed entirely.

The reality is that women still have to face prejudice and hardships unknown to men on a daily basis. The still unfair job market is only one example. However, among these ambiguous results, some women have found within themselves the strength to be leaders and innovators in their fields. Their example inspires and motivates women and girls everywhere, showing that they too have the possibility to reach new heights and accomplishments.

1. Sheryl Sandberg

Facebook’s COO has been a familiar appearance in Forbes’ 100 Most Powerful Women list for five years running, and that is for good reason. Number seven overall, she was overtaken only by political figures and world leaders such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel or Hillary Clinton. Through her position and personal fortune, Sheryl Sandberg has made her way in an industry that has remained largely a boys’ club.

The start of her present career was predicated by a meeting with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg at a Christmas party. Wanted by both Google and the Washington Post, Sandberg joined Facebook in 2008 and quickly became an essential member of the team, overseeing sales, marketing, business development, human resources, public policy and communications. In 2012, she became the first woman in the company’s board of directors.

A successful manager and a financially accomplished professional at 47, Sandberg also became a published author in 2013. Her book, Lean in, dealt with the lack of women in government and other leadership positions. It quickly became one of the bestsellers of the year. Dedicated and efficient, Sheryl Sandberg seems to turn everything she touches into gold. Her example proves that women can reach the highest positions in society and lead their companies to profit.

2. Susan Wojcicki

Overtaking HP’s CEO Meg Whitman, Youtube’s own CEO followed Sheryl Sandberg as the 8th Most Powerful Woman in Forbes’ list. A Harvard honor graduate, Wojcicki originally started out in the industry at Intel. Quitting, she was to join a small promising company by the name of Google as its 16th employee, the company functioning out of her garage in Menlo Park. She stuck with the founders of Google and was royally rewarded for her contribution and loyalty.

From her position of senior vice president of advertising and commerce, Wojcicki revolutionized the app market by overseeing Google’s development of analytic and advertising products such as Google Images and Google Books.

In 2006, she saw the opportunity that was Youtube and convinced her bosses to buy it. She ended up leading the online media giant since 2014, overseeing its steady rise and evolution. In 2015, Time magazine called Wojcicki “the most powerful woman on the internet”, with other mentions in Adweek and Vanity Fair. Smart and resourceful, she embodies the trend in education that became obvious in the last years. With better access to education, women are starting to penetrate and conquer the job market, leading the best name brands.

3. Dame Zaha Mohammad Hadid

Born in Iraq but known all over the globe as one of Britain’s best architects, Zaha Hadid was the first woman to receive the Pritzker Architecture Prize. Other awards followed, chief among them being the Royal Gold Medal from the Royal Institute of British Architecture, given for the first time to a woman. Moreover, she was made a Dame by Queen Elizabeth the Second for her services to architecture.

Zaha Hadid’s buildings, such as the Zaragoza Bridge Pavilion in Spain or the Galaxy SOHO in China, exude beauty and are fraught with her unique style. Her other works in South Korea, the United Arab Emirates or Azerbaijan are of colossal proportions, filling the sky of the beholder.  With each of her buildings, Zaha Hadid tore down another barrier for women in architecture.

An artist of image and design, Hadid’s untimely death in March 2016 left a gap in the architectural world. She left behind a rich legacy of accomplishments and enormous shoes to fill for her successors in the field.

These three women all serve as perfect examples of what women can achieve. They were trailblazers, pioneers of some of the most male-dominated fields. Their actions not only brought the gender gap closer to closing, but also shattered stereotypes and brought service to society as a whole.


About the author:

Amanda Wilks is a well-known writer and editor within the Workbootcritic team. Her articles and online contributions can be found on several major blogs and review sites, underlining her dedication to collaboration and open sourcing. Energetic, incisive and informative, her articles are appreciated by her readers.

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