News / Asia

Q&A with Moira Forbes: Leading Women in Asia

FILE - World Health Organization (WHO) Director General Margaret Chan speaks during a conference on Universal Health Coverage for inclusive and sustainable growth in Tokyo.
FILE - World Health Organization (WHO) Director General Margaret Chan speaks during a conference on Universal Health Coverage for inclusive and sustainable growth in Tokyo.
Frances Alonzo
Forbes announced its 10th anniversary of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women listing. Among the top 100 are 23 Asian women that include self-made entrepreneur billionaires, an entertainer with over 66 million social media followers and a head of state that oversees a 1.6 trillion dollar economy. 
 
Moira Forbes, Forbes President and Publisher of ForbesWoman, told VOA's Frances Alonzo that nine Chinese women are taking the lead in Asia. 
 
Q&A with Moira Forbes: Leading Women in Asia
Q&A with Moira Forbes: Leading Women in Asiai
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

FORBES: Of the 23 women, China had the highest number of women on our power women’s list with nine women this year, followed by India with three women, Singapore with two women. Then other countries represented were Burma, Indonesia, South Korea, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand.  
 
Women from Asia-Pacific on our list represent and exemplify the other trends that we are seeing all across the world. Our first is obviously the ways in which women are leveraging their political power, overseeing some of the largest and most influential economies in the world. The highest ranking woman from Asia on our list is the President of South Korea. She oversees a 1.6 trillion dollar economy. She came into office looking to rejuvenate the economy and rekindle relations with North Korea, which has been a challenge. But she’s someone who exemplifies, not just wielding huge influence in her own country and not just in Asia, but diplomatic and political relations around the world.
 
Another great trend that we’re seeing that is exemplified on this list as well is the use of social media. New to the list this year was the entertainer Yao Chen at just 34 years old. She’s an entertainer, well-known obviously in China and around the region. But what we thought was very interesting was the fact that she’s using her platform and she’s using her celebrity to drive change in meaningful ways. She’s the most socially active, or has the highest social following of any of our power women with more than 66 million followers on Weibo. But she’s also using that platform to be a champion for human rights issues.
 
And another trend is the rise of entrepreneurs. This year overall on our list, we had 18 women who either founded their own businesses or foundations. And we also had nine self-made billionaires around the world on our list this year, including women like Zhang Xin, number 62 on our list , who is a co-founder and CEO of SOHO China. So women are wielding huge influence in traditional power roles but striking out on their own and creating meaningful businesses in doing so.
 
ALONZO:  You mention that the largest group from Asia is China. What is it about these women in China that seem to really dominate the list from Asia?
 
FORBES:  What we [have] seen, not just on our power women list, but we’ve seen China representing a lot of categories where women are emerging into positions of political power. Someone like Zhang Xin, for example,  cites the fact that even under communism, women were equally educated, had equal education on par with their male counterparts. The fact that they had access to education and its economy that’s booming.  So when we are looking at these economies that are in high growth mode, or at least in high growth mode in relation to other parts of the world, often there is a talent vacuum where if you have a highly educated female population you are going to see more and more women rise up the ranks just because of that very talent vacuum.
 
We’ve seen a lot of female entrepreneurs emerge out of China. Self-made billionaires emerging out of China, seizing opportunities before them in ways that may not have ever been before possible. Often these women are Western educated, so they understand  business acumen across different markets and they are creating businesses that scale far beyond the traditional scope of country borders.
 
ALONZO:  What’s the youngest woman that you see there and the oldest?
 
FORBES:  The youngest woman on this year’s list is Yao Chen at just 34 years old, and the oldest woman is Margaret Chan who is age 66, director-general of the World Health Organization.
 
ALONZO:  What can women do to increase their own influence and their own power in their own worlds?
 
FORBES:  I think you know the most important thing to be a change agent today, is the ability to connect with others.  I think power today and always has been really about the ability to influence. How do you shape minds? How do you create a dialogue? How do you rally people around your vision as a leader? And so I think great leadership comes from the ability to influence and that comes from the ability to connect and engage individuals regardless of culture, age, ethnicity and the like.

You May Like

Kurdish Party Pushes Political Gamble to Run in Turkey Poll

HDP announces it will run as political party instead of fielding independent candidates in June election, but faces tough 10 percent threshold More

Twitter Targets Islamic State

New research shows suspending Twitter accounts of Islamic State, its supporters has been effective; group, its backers are facing 'significant pressure,' says terrorism expert More

Video Former Sudan 'Lost Boy' Becomes Chess Master in NYC

Majur Juac made the leap from being a refugee in Africa to a master chess champion in US, where he shares his expertise with students More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Spacei
X
Rosanne Skirble
January 27, 2015 5:05 PM
The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.
Video

Video Saved By a Mistake - an Auschwitz Survivor's Story

Dagmar Lieblova was 14 when she arrived at Auschwitz in December 1943, along with her entire Czech Jewish family. All of them were to die there, but she was able to leave after several months due to a bureaucratic mix-up which saved her life. Now 85, with three children and six grandchildren, she says she has a feeling of victory. This report by Ahmad Wadiei and Farin Assemi, of RFE/RL's Radio Farda is narrated by RFE’s Raymond Furlong.
Video

Video Weekly Protests in Korea Keep Japanese WWII Atrocities Alive

Every week in Seoul protesters gather in front of the Japanese Embassy to demand an apology and reparations from Tokyo for the thousands of South Korean women who were forced into prostitution during World War II. Although this year marks the 70th anniversary of the end of the war, these protestors have helped keep the issue of comfort women alive and made it difficult for Japan to move beyond its past wartime atrocities. VOA's Brian Padden reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Exercise: New Prescription for Parkinsons Disease

Exercise could be the new prescription for Parkinson's Disease, a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects movement. More than six million people worldwide suffer from Parkinsons and they're traditionally treated with medication and surgery. Shelley Schlender has more.
Video

Video Brussels Shaken as New Greek Leader Challenges Europe’s Austerity Drive

Greece’s youngest-ever prime minister, 40-year-old Alexis Tsipras, was sworn in Monday after his victorious far-left Syriza party entered a coalition with far right rivals. Tsipras says he will restore dignity to Greece by ending spending cuts. So begins a new chapter for the country at the epicenter of Europe’s economic crisis - a change that has sent tremors across the continent, as Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visit

U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video White House Grapples With Yemen Counterterrorism Strategy

Reports say the U.S. has carried out a drone strike on suspected militants in Yemen, the first after President Barack Obama offered reassurances the U.S. is continuing its counterterrorism operations in the country. The future of those operations has been in question following the collapse last week of Yemen’s government. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Oil Price Drop Troubles Texas Producers

As oil prices have fallen over the past several months, drilling operations have slowed in some parts of the United States - including Texas, the state that surpasses all others in energy production. The Lone Star State’s energy output has been boosted in recent years by development of resources trapped deep below ground in the Eagle Ford shale deposit, which stretches across south central Texas. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Karnes City, Texas, the drop in oil prices has created concerns,
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid