TED Conversations

Kat Haber

Organizer / Curator, WILD Foundation


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How can TEDx events balance the ratio of female to male speakers?

Recently many organizers and TED staff have been wondering why men are more likely to show up on TEDx stages speaking than do women. Is it a question of courage or time or desire or family responsibilities or not being known or lack of degrees or lack of power or looking harder? What do you think are the reasons? How can we change this?

Women are reshaping our world. http://www.ted.com/themes/women_reshaping_the_world.html

How do we find them, invite them, support them, give them a platform to amplify their ideas, have their voices heard, and radically increase their own image of what they are capable of impacting? Where are they investing their life energy? How can we value and reward them? Do you know any who should be speaking at a TEDx? Or nominated to be a TED Fellow?


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    Nov 9 2013: Bryan, I am the grateful recipient of a quota 35 years ago for women to attend the US MIlitary Service Academies, receiving an appointment to US Air Force Academy from then Congressman Les Aspin, later to become Defense Secretary. That being said, TEDx organizers are free to program our events as we wish. Quota is contraculture TEDx events. TED Cred contributes to TEDx events being respected and attractive to Xtraordinary voices waiting to be heard and invited to speak on TEDx stages. So it is not likely that quotas would be invoked by organizers. Cred trumps supply and demand.
    • Nov 10 2013: If you want "balance", only a quota will work. What is your priority? I had thought that the Service Academy policy was not a quota but a realignment of standards to essentially eliminate a quota of "little to no women at all".

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