Power in Asia

singaporeIt has long been known that Asia is a real powerhouse. In addition, it is home to seven out of the top 10 fastest growing economies. In addition, in a recent ranking undertaken by Business Insider, 15 out of the 50 most powerful people in the world were Asian-based. The ranking went according to: economic power, newsworthiness, impact etc., and how much recognition they have in their industries.

Furthermore, women are thriving in Asia. At Singtel for example – the huge telecom company in the region – a third of senior management roles are held by women. This includes: Group CEO and head of Investment, Operations and Technology.   In Singapore the success of women in the workplace is especially existent. Over the past ten years, according to the World Economic Forum, there has been an escalation of 15% of women in the workforce. As well, women comprise 15% of CEOs in Singapore (which is the highest in Asia, and the third highest in the world). Although, that does mean that 85% of CEOs are men…

In Japan it seems that companies are trying to gear up to women’s rights and gender equality in the workplace.   Just recently the country’s Ministry of Trade and Industry – together with the Tokyo Stock Exchange – chose Nissan as the “Nadeshiko Brand firm,” the company that “promotes the use of the female workforce.” The nadeshiko is a pink flower (carnation) that grows in Japan and is often associated with the beauty and grace of Japanese women.

However before we get too excited about Japan, we might want to remember that “its GDP just contracted for the second quarter in a row, which, yes is the rule of thumb we use to define a recession.” But that’s not the only way we measure a region’s success. When it comes to technology, according to Michael Sekora, an ex-top U.S. Defense Agency executive, “What matters ultimately is technology. Japan has continued to perform superlatively on that measure. America’s performance has been disastrous.”