Each year, students at the Yale School of Management organize conferences that convene leaders in a range of industries. We asked the organizers of the Fempire: The Yale Conference on Women, Technology, and Power to share the key insights they took away from the experience.
Fempire: The Yale Conference on Women, Technology, and Power took place at the Yale School of Management on March 1, 2019, launching a year-long celebration of the 50th anniversary of women at Yale College and the 150th anniversary of women at the university.
The corporate world has tremendous power to shape people’s lives—through employment policies, product and procurement decisions, pricing, and marketing campaigns. Perhaps this has always been the case, but the current leadership vacuum, in the United States at least, makes this issue more urgent than ever.
At Fempire, we considered how we, as current and future leaders, should think about these issues: How do we make decisions for ourselves and those we might impact? Perhaps most importantly, how do we make sure no one gets left behind? The conference setting was the perfect vehicle for us to explore these questions by bringing progressive thinkers from a wide cross-section of sectors together for organic moderated conversations, keynotes, and a fireside chat.
We examined the way data can be used as both a tool for empowerment and a means of perpetuating existing biases. We looked at organizations that are advocating for women- (and people-) friendly policies in both the private and public sectors and at corporations whose internal and external rules of engagement aim to put women at the forefront.
We hope that Fempire is the beginning of a movement that asks more of the business community in the quest toward gender parity. We can’t wait to see what direction next year’s Fempire conference takes, as it pushes us all to think more inclusively about our roles as leaders of business and society.