Michelle Obama urges Apple to employ more women
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On Tuesday 6th June Michelle Obama was asked to address Apple’s 2017 Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California, on the role of women in the technology industry. Speaking with Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of environment policy and social initiatives, Obama urged Apple to reconsider the amount of women they employ on the basis of the important insight they could offer. She prompted employers to ask themselves “Who are you marketing to? Who do you think is going to use these apps? If women aren’t at the table, you’re going to miss my dollar. Because you don’t really know me.” Such reservations are clearly not entirely unfounded, as with only 32% of Apple’s employees worldwide being female there is a clear argument for Google missing out on a strong female perspective when it comes to creating and developing apps. However, although employing more women is undeniably important, and one obvious way to create a more diverse workforce in a typically male dominated industry, Obama further argued that focusing purely on workers in their twenties and thirties was too late. Instead Obama, who has long been an advocate for advances in women’s education, highlighted the need for substantial changes in the schooling panorama. She specifically called on college students to be role models for the next generation and to help encourage more women into professions such as those within the tech industry.
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