Adventure, Challenges, Feminism, TED, World issues

29 Amazing Women @TEDGlobal 2013 Stage

Shereen El Feki 1Amazing and brilliant women are everywhere, including on TED and TEDx stages worldwide. There just aren’t enough of them on those stages.

This year at TEDGlobal 2013, in Edinburgh, 29 of the 85 speakers (about 36%) are women (see alphabetical by first name bios and links below).

I’ve blogged about (and advocated for) gender parity on TED and other stages for the past four years: 17 Women Rocked Stage @TED2012, TED2012 Full Spectrum Shy on Gender Parity (Again!),  . TEDWomen A Resounding Success! Or Was It?  Speak Up, Speak Out, Take The Stage: The World Needs More TED Women) are some of the articles I’ve written.

I compiled a list of 300+ TED talks by rockin’ TED women speakers (AAA Alphabetical TED Women Talks List), and gave my own TEDxAjman talk on the imbalance issue (@AmazingSusan Rocks Gender Imparity Boat).

So far, not much has changed (despite the best efforts of TED organizers), although progress is being made at TED Global in particular. One day gender parity will be achieved (let’s hope it’s in my lifetime!)

In the meantime, I applaud (literally and figuratively) the amazing women speakers who make their voices heard in every discipline on all kinds of stages in all kinds of venues around the world. You do us proud. Thank you.

Abha Dawesar 1Abha Dawesar

Dawesar (born January 1, 1974) is an Indian novelist writing in English. She is a Harvard graduate who was awarded a New York Foundation of the Arts fiction fellowship. She currently lives in New York City.

Alexa Meade 1Alexa Meade
Visual artist
Meade (born 1986) is an American artist best known for her painted portraits. However, she works on an unusual canvas: the actual human body. And she takes a classical concept — trompe l’oeil, the art of making a two-dimensional representation look three-dimensional—and turns it on its head. Her aim is to do the opposite, to collapse depth and make her living models into flat pictures. The result is walking, talking optical illusions, 3D paintings that confuse how the eye processes objects in space.

An Xiao Mina 1An Xiao Mina

Creative technologist
In 2009, An Xiao Mina started the Brooklyn Museum’s Twitter commission, 1stfans, with a project involving Morse code. It was the first socially networked membership for a museum. She also founded @Platea, a global social media art collective that has exhibited and performed throughout the United States, the United Kingdom, Puerto Rico, Australia and Western Europe. An Xiao Mina grew up in Los Angeles and Manila, and has also lived in New York.

She was listed in The Guardian’s “who’s who” of the Twitter art world in 2009. She has written about social media art for the New York Foundation for the Arts, and as a columnist for Art21’s Art 2.1: Creating on the Social Web, which she started. She also wrote an influential essay on social media art for Hrag Vartanian’s A Hyperallergic.

More here.

anne marie slaughter 2Anne-Marie Slaughter

Public policy thinker
Anne-Marie Slaughter (born September 27, 1958) is the Bert G. Kerstetter ’66 University Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University and was formerly Dean of Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.[1][2][3] She is an academic, foreign policy analyst, and public commentator through the old and new media.

Slaughter’s article titled “Why Women Still Can’t Have it All” appeared in the July/August 2012 issue of The Atlantic. In the first four days after publication, the piece attracted 725,000 unique readers, making it by far the most popular magazine article ever published in that magazine. In the same period, it received over 119,000 Facebook “Recommends,” making it by far the most “liked” piece ever to appear in any version of the magazine. Within several days, it had been discussed in detail on the front page of the New York Times and in many other media outlets, attracting attention from around the world. More recently she asked Do You See the World As a Ladder or a Web? in a Huffpost piece.

More here.


Annette Heuser 1Annette Heuser

Rating agency reformer

Annette Heuser is executive director and founder of the Washington, DC office of the Bertelsmann Foundation, a private, non-partisan operational foundation that promotes and strengthens trans-Atlantic cooperation. She previously established the Foundation’s Brussels office and served as its Executive Director from 2000 to 2006. From 1995 to 2000, she was Director Europe/USA at the Bertelsmann Stiftung in Gütersloh, Germany. In this function, she managed European and trans-Atlantic projects, and developed European networking activities.
In the corporate sector, Annette served as vice president of international relations at Bertelsmann AG, Europe’s largest media company. She was editor of the Jahrbuch der Europäischen Integration, an annual publication that covers the year’s institutional and political developments in European integration.

More here

Carin Bondar 1Carin Bondar

Wild sex biologist
From The Huffington Post: Carin Bondar is a biologist, writer and science communicator with a PhD in population ecology from the University of British Columbia. Her current writing largely focuses on quirky animal behavior relating to sexual reproduction. Dr. Bondar has appeared in a scientific capacity on various television networks (Discovery World HD, Discovery Canada, CTV, SHAW, City TV (Vancouver)) and her work has been featured online at National Geographic Wild, Jezebel, BoingBoing, Forbes, The Guardian, and The Daily Beast. She is currently a science film and television blogger for Scientific American, and she recently released her first book ‘The Nature of Human Nature’, a light-hearted look at where the human species fits in with the rest of the animal kingdom. Dr. Bondar lives with her husband and 4 young children near Vancouver, BC.

Here’s the trailer for her series:

Charmian Gooch 1Charmian Gooch

Anti-corruption activist
Co-Founder and Co-Director, Global Witness, which addresses the links between natural resource exploitation and the funding of conflict and corruption. Jointly led Global Witness’ first campaign, exposing the trade in timber between the Khmer Rouge and Thai logging companies and their political and military backers; developed and launched its second ground-breaking campaign, combating blood diamonds. Member: Young Global Leaders Alumni Community, World Economic Forum. Recipient of the Gleitsman International Activist Award (2005).

Chrystia Freeland 2Chrystia Freeland

Plutocracy chronicler
Freeland is currently Managing Director and Editor, Consumer News, at Thomson Reuters. Previously she was Editor of Thomson Reuters Digital, a position she held since April 2011. Previously, she was the Global Editor-at-Large of Reuters news since March 1, 2010, having formerly been the United States managing editor at the Financial Times, based in New York City. She has worked in Kyiv, Moscow, London, Toronto and currently in New York. She is the author of Sale of the Century, a 2000 book about Russia’s journey from communism to capitalism and Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else in October, 2012. Plutocrats was a New York Times bestseller, and the winner of the 2013 Lionel Gelber Prize for non-fiction reporting on foreign affairs.

More here.

Dambisa Moyo 1Dambisa Moyo

Global economist
Dambisa Moyo is a Zambian-born economist who analyzes the macroeconomy and global affairs. She is the author of Dead Aid: Why Aid is Not Working and How There is a Better Way For Africa (2009), How the West Was Lost: Fifty Years of Economic Folly – And the Stark Choices that Lie Ahead (2011) and Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What It Means for the World (June 2012).

More here.

Dina El Wedidi

Singled out for the originality of her voice and style, Egyptian singer Dina El Wedidi has made her mark on her country’s music scene in just a few years.
Here she is performing live with friends:

Facebook Official page


Musical alchemist

Mixing pure pop with opera, jazz and classic songcraft, Elizaveta transmutes musical forms into emotional auditory experiences.

Elizabeth Loftus 2Elizabeth Loftus

False memories scholar
Elizabeth F. Loftus (born Elizabeth Fishman, in 1944) is an American cognitive psychologist and expert on human memory. She has conducted extensive research on the malleability of human memory. Loftus is best known for her ground-breaking work on the misinformation effect and eyewitness memory, and the creation and nature of false memories, including recovered memories of childhood sexual abuse. As well as her prolific work inside the laboratory, Loftus has been heavily involved in applying her research to legal settings; she has consulted or provided expert witness testimony for hundreds of cases. Loftus has been recognized throughout the world for her work, receiving numerous awards and honorary degrees. In 2002, Loftus was ranked 58th in the Review of General Psychology’s list of the 100 most influential psychological researchers of the 20th century, and was the highest ranked woman on the list.

More here.

Holly Morris

Explorer and filmmaker
Holly Morris is an American author, explorer, documentary director/producer and television presenter. She is a frequent contributor to The New York Times Book Review and other national publications, and is the former editorial director of the publishing company Seal Press, which was acquired by Avalon in 2003 and then Perseus in 2007. As an editorial director, she acquired and edited fiction and nonfiction on diverse topics including third wave feminism, health, international politics, and travel.
Morris is the executive producer, writer/director and host of the eight-part international PBS documentary series Adventure Divas, as well as author of Adventure Divas: Searching the Globe for a New Kind of Heroine (Random House, 2005, 2006), which was named a New York Times “Editors’ Choice”.As a producer and correspondent, Morris has made programs in Cuba, Iran, India, Niger, Borneo, Zambia, Brazil, Guyana, Malawi, and Gabon, Syria, Ukraine and Bangladesh, among other countries.

Kelly McGonigal 1Kelly McGonigal

Science-help psychologist
Kelly McGonigal, PhD, is a health psychologist and lecturer at Stanford University, and a leading expert in the new field of “science-help.” She is passionate about translating cutting-edge research from psychology, neuroscience, and medicine into practical strategies for health, happiness, and personal success.

Her most recent book, The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It (Penguin 2012), explores the latest research on motivation, temptation, and procrastination, as well as what it takes to transform habits, persevere at challenges, and make a successful change. Her audio series The Neuroscience of Change (Sounds True 2012) weaves the newest findings of science with Eastern contemplative wisdom to give listeners a revolutionary process for personal transformation. She is also the author of Yoga for Pain Relief: Simple Practices to Calm Your Mind and Heal Your Pain (New Harbinger, 2009), which translates recent advances in neuroscience and medicine into mind-body strategies for relieving chronic pain, stress, depression, and anxiety.

More at her website.

Lesley Hazleton 1Lesley Hazleton

Accidental theologist
Lesley Hazleton (born 1945) is an award-winning British-American writer whose work focuses on the intersection of politics, religion, and history, especially in the Middle East. She reported from Israel for Time, and has written on the Middle East for numerous publications including The New York Times, The New York Review of Books, Harper’s, The Nation, and The New Republic.
Hazleton was born in England but became a United States citizen in 1994. She was based in Jerusalem from 1966 to 1979 and in New York City from 1979 to 1992, when she moved to her current home in Seattle WA, originally to get her pilot’s license. She has two degrees in psychology (B.A. Manchester University, M.A. Hebrew University of Jerusalem).
She has described herself as “a Jew who once seriously considered becoming a rabbi, a former convent schoolgirl who daydreamed about being a nun, an agnostic with a deep sense of religious mystery though no affinity for organized religion”. “Everything is paradox,” she has said. “The danger is one-dimensional thinking”. Hazleton is the author of ‘The First Muslim,’ a new look at the life of the Prophet Muhammad.

More here.

lissie 1Lissie

Singer and songwriter

Elisabeth Corrin Maurus (born 1982), known by her stage name Lissie, is an American folk rock artist and Paste Magazine’s No. 1 best new solo artist of 2010. She released her debut EP, “Why You Runnin'”, in November 2009. Her debut album, Catching a Tiger, was released in June 2010.

More here.

Manal Al Sharif 4Manal Al-Sharif

Women’s rights activist
Manal al-Sharif advocates for women’s right to drive, male guardianship annulment, and family protection in Saudi Arabia.

Mariana Mazzucato 2Mariana Mazzucato
Innovation economist

Mazzucato’s research uses theoretical, empirical, and computational techniques in economics to study the feedback between technological change, firm performance and industry structure. She works within the Schumpeterian framework of evolutionary economics, studying the origin and evolution of persistent differences between firms and how these differences vary across sectors and over the industry life-cycle. Her empirical studies have focused on the auto, PC, biotech and pharma industries. Her most recent work has analyzed the co-evolution of technological change and stock market bubbles. In this, she claims that stock price volatility tends to be highest, at the firm and industry level, when technological innovation is the most “radical”.

More here.


Marla Spivak 2Marla Spivak

Bees scholar
Marla Spivak is an entomologist who is developing practical applications to protect honey bee populations from decimation by disease while making fundamental contributions to our understanding of bee biology. Essential to healthy ecosystems and to the agricultural industry as pollinators of a third of the United States’ food supply, honey bees have been disappearing at alarming rates in recent years due to the accumulated effects of parasitic mites, viral and bacterial diseases, and exposure to pesticides. To mitigate these threats, Spivak’s research focuses on genetically influenced behaviors that confer disease resistance to entire colonies through the social interactions of thousands of workers. Her studies of hygienic behavior—the ability of certain strains of bees to detect and remove infected pupae from their hives—have enabled her to breed more disease-resistant strains of bees for use throughout the beekeeping industry.

More here.
Video here.

May El-Khalil 1May El-Khalil
Founder of the Beirut Marathon
May Faysal El-Khalil (Born 20 December 1955) is a prize-winning sports official from Lebanon. She is a passionate sportswoman. In 2001 she had a serious accident, when she was hit by a car while running. She was in coma for a while and it was expected that she would never be able to walk again as she was operated more than 20 times. While her convalescence the idea came to her to create a marathon in Beirut. As president of the Beirut Marathon Association she organised the first Beirut Marathon (BLOM) in 2003, where 3000 runners participated. 2011, at the ninth holding, 30.000 athletes started. El-Khalil understands the Beirut Marathon as a “peace run”.
May El-Khalil was honoured many times for her commitment to sports. In 2011 she received the Laureus Sport for Good Award and the Power of Sport Award from the International Sports Press Association.

More here.

Molly Stevens 1Molly Stevens

Biomaterials researcher
Molly Stevens has developed novel approaches to tissue engineering that are likely to prove very powerful in the engineering of large quantities of human mature bone for autologous transplantation as well as other vital organs such as liver and pancreas, which have proven elusive with other approaches. This has led to moves to commercialise the technology and set-up a clinical trial for bone regeneration in humans. In the field of nanotechnology the group has current research efforts in exploiting specific biomolecular recognition and self-assembly mechanisms to create new dynamic nano-materials, biosensors and drug delivery systems. Recent efforts by the Stevens group in peptide-functionalised nanoparticles for enzyme biosensing have enabled the most sensitive facile enzyme detection to date and have a host of applications across diseases ranging from cancer to global health applications.

natasha bednfield 3Natasha Bedingfield

Singer, songwriter
Natasha Anne Bedingfield (born 26 November 1981) is a British pop singer and songwriter. Bedingfield released her first album, Unwritten, in 2004, which contained primarily up-tempo pop songs and was influenced by R&B music. It enjoyed international success with more than 2.3 million copies sold worldwide. Bedingfield received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for the title track “Unwritten”, and at the 2005 and 2006 Brit Awards she was nominated for Best British Female Artist. Her second album, N.B. (2007), yielded the UK top 10 singles “I Wanna Have Your Babies” and “Soulmate”.

Unwritten (26 million views on YouTube)

More here.

Renata Salecl 1Renata Salecl

Democracy thinker
Renata Salecl (born in 1962) is a Slovene philosopher, sociologist and legal theorist. She is a senior researcher at the Institute of Criminology, Faculty of Law at the University of Ljubljana. She has been a visiting professor at London School of Economics and at Birkbeck College University of London, lecturing on the topic of emotions and law. Every year she lectures for a couple of weeks at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law (New York), on Psychoanalysis and Law. She has also been teaching course on neuroscience and law. In 2012 she was also attached as visiting professor at Kings College, London. Her books have been translated into ten languages.

More here.


Singer and songwriter
Ruth-Anne is a 23-year-old singer/songwriter/producer/vocal producer from Dublin, In Ireland, She is signed to Sony ATV as of May 2010. At 17 years old she was brought, by her then Manager Eamonn Maguire, to the US where she co-wrote JoJo’s hit single “Too Little Too Late” with Billy Steinberg and Josh Alexander. It went from number 66 to number 3 on the Billboard hot 100 chart in just one week in America, breaking records as the biggest leap in one week at the time. It went on to be a worldwide smash in over 30 countries, the song itself sold over 1 million copies and was certified platinum by the RIAA in America, the album also was certified Platinum selling over 1 million copies and was certified gold in the UK, Canada and Germany. She was awarded with the very prestigious ASCAP songwriters best pop award at the 24th annual ASCAP pop awards 2007 for “Too little too late”

Sandra Aamodt 1Sandra Aamodt

Neuroscientist and science writer
Sandra Aamodt is neuroscientist and science writer, coauthor (with Sam Wang) of two popular books. Welcome to Your Brain: Why You Lose Your Car Keys But Never Forget How to Drive and Other Puzzles of Everyday Life was published by Bloomsbury US (March 2008) and twenty-three international publishers. The American Association for the Advancement of Science named it their Young Adult Science Book of the Year in 2009.
Welcome to Your Child’s Brain: How the Mind Grows from Conception to College was also published by Bloomsbury US (September 2011) and is under contract with sixteen international publishers. Aamodt’s science writing has been published in The New York Times, Washington Post, El Mundo and the Times of London, among other places.
Before becoming an author, she was the editor in chief of Nature Neuroscience, a leading scientific journal in the field of brain research.

Shereen El Feki 1Shereen El Feki

Arab sexuality expert
Shereen El Feki
Arab sexuality expert
From the Huffington Post: Shereen El Feki is a writer, broadcaster and academic. She is an expert on social change in the Arab region, particularly as it relates to sexual and reproductive life, and served as vice-chair of the Global Commission on HIV and the Law, representing the Arab region. She is a United Nations Global Expert, a project of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations.

Sonia Shah 1Sonia Shah
Science writer
Sonia Shah (born 1969 in New York City, United States) is an American investigative journalist and author noted for her articles on corporate power – especially with respect to agriculture, oil and pharmaceutical industries – and on gender equality with specific reference to issues that affect developing countries. Contributes narratives on history programs. She is the author of The Fever: How Malaria Has Ruled Humankind for 500,000 Years.

More here.

Suzana Herculano-Houzel


Tania_Bruguera 1Tania Bruguera

Performance artist
Tania Bruguera (born 1968 in Havana, Cuba) is a Cuban installation and performance artist. Bruguera studied at the Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana and then earned an M.F.A. in performance from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Bruguera lives and works between Chicago and Havana. She is the founder and director of Arte de Conducta (behavior art), the first performance studies program in Latin America, which is hosted by Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana. From 2003-2010, she was an Assistant Professor at the Department of Visual Arts of The University of Chicago, United States and is an invited professor at the University IUAV in Venice, Italy.

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