Indian entrepreneur Chetna Sinha member of all-women co-chairs at World Economic Forum 2018


Making a strong statement for gender equality, for the first time in its 47 year history, the World Economic Forum at Davos, is being co -chaired exclusively by women. On the team of co-chairs along with International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde, IBM CEO Ginni Rometty and Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, is Chetna Sinha, a social entrepreneur who’s dedicated her life’s work to the empowerment of women and marginalized communities. She founded the Mann Deshi Mahila Sahkari Bank, a microfinance company that lends to women in rural areas and the Mann Deshi Foundation that supports female entrepreneurs. For nearly three decades, Sinha has been working to empower women through her notable work as a social entrepreneur, microfinance banker, economist, farmer and activist.She will also be launching India’s first fund for women micro-entrepreneurs at Davos along with her panel on creating prosperity by investing in small women-run businesses.

The World Economic Forum hosted at the alpine town of Davos plays host to leaders from the worlds of politics, business and arts had received criticism in the past, for being too male-centric and having less than 20% women participating of its 3000 attendees. In fact, the term “Davos Man” was coined to indicate in negative tonality, the rich aristocratic “men’s club” at the forum each year. This year, the seven chairs are exclusively women, making a bold statement to change the status quo. The forum will focus on the theme “Creating a shared future in a fractured world” and we expect to hear the theme of gender equality and women’s empowerment resonate through many of its discussions and talks over the next week.

It’s been a historic year for women the world over. From vociferously speaking up against sexual assault with the #metoo campaign, to making powerful statements at the Golden Globe Awards and being names “TIME Person of the Year”, women’s rights are at the forefront of every discussion from living rooms to newsfeeds. With the spotlight on women’s empowerment and raging gender issues such as gender pay-gap at a stage as large as the World Economic Forum, the future for women and that of the world of tomorrow looks promising and encouraging.

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