Build resilience and diversity for a winning year

The popular Lantern Festival takes place today to celebrate the first full moon night on this 15th day of Lunar New Year. It’s a tradition that started over 2000 years ago for the family reunion and harmony importance. Along with Yuanxiao, the small sweet rice balls in round shape are eaten as a typical holiday food on the day for family gathering time. On the same time, the full snow moon occurs this weekend as the Moon of Purification and Renewal to spark the Year of the Ox with peace and blessings.

Lantern Festival is known as a treasured occasion to enjoy folk dances, popular folklore and illuminating fun within families and social gatherings. Lighting and appreciation of lanterns are main festivities for the holiday celebration. Beautiful and colorful, the red paper lanterns are symbols of good luck, hope and love for a brighter year and future. Being a wonderful art of lights, the lantern has an important meaning to help lead the way forward and push aside the darkness towards the future. Throughout the long history, the lantern has been used not only as a source of light or simple paper decoration, but also a modern form of celebration and worship. From the ancient age to the legend, the lantern has become a cultural icon and national pride in many Asian countries including China, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam etc. There are Chinese painted paper lanterns, glowing sky lanterns in southeast Asia and floating water lanterns in Japan…whichever are at homes or in public spaces, all has the significations of honoring deceased ancestors and best wishes for family reunion and joy, living reconciliation as well as the return of spring.

Watch the glorious full moon shinning in night sky with the dazzling lights and joyful colors of memorable Lantern Festival, what do you wish for an amazing holiday and the year to come? This year, Chinese New year celebration has started at new moon on February 12 to mark the beginning of the Year of the Ox. In many cultures, the Ox is a faithful animal and lucky symbol with many good values including health, strength, courage and perseverance. According to the 12-year Chinese zodiac calendar, it’s the Year of the Metal Ox which represents positive movements of booming life and prosperous business. Nowadays, the Lunar New Year aka Spring Festival is celebrated across Asian communities such as China, South Korean and Vietnam…The entire festival celebration lasts 15 days in some Asian nations with the highlight of ancient Lantern Festival on the last day. After having experienced the past year full of challenging and hardship, many people are more than happy to welcome the Lunar New Year of the Ox for change and move forward for a healthy and strong year ahead.

Traditions, families and Valentine’s Day, we enjoyed February full of holidays and love, now we get into the month of March as sprint time with a lot of natural activities and global movements on the way.

Female leadership for change

March is Women’s History Month, time to commemorate and celebrate the achievements of women throughout our history and culture. By highlighting International Women’s Day on March 8, the annual month-long event focuses on the important contribution and vital role of women in all aspects of our life and society to recognize the countless women making an impact in their communities, their nation, and the world. As the global recovery is starting slowly from the devastating pandemic, this year’s International Women’s Day is like no other with the theme of Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world.

Women’s rights are human rights. These are the rights about making moves for gender justice and a call to action for accelerating gender parity, such as to live free from violence and discrimination, to access the quality healthcare, to be educated and have the equal pay, to vote and get the equal opportunity of leadership in political and business worlds. Today, women remain concentrated in the lowest paid jobs across the world, they are nearly twice as likely than men to lose their jobs during the COVID-19 crisis, and the pandemic has dramatically increased the women’s poverty rate and widened the gap with men…The economic security and independence are necessary for women to engage more deeply in the decision makings for the change, there’s still a long way to work on historic obstacles and social economic barriers, gender inequality and lack of female leadership positions. For instance, women are Heads of State or Government in 22 countries, and only 24.9 per cent of national parliamentarians are women. In only 14 countries where 50% or more of government cabinet members are women, just over 1 in 4 managers across all sectors are women globally……It’s the time to demand change and make a commitment to women everywhere to stand up for human rights and join the fight for an equal future. Change laws, take action, transform gender relations and challenge discriminatory norms, the generation equality can rise in the way we lead, talk, support, question and think to make sure that resources and power are more equitably distributed for women.

Women are the active members of the global community with valuable social, economic, cultural and political accomplishments, they want and deserve a freedom with equal rights and opportunities for all. Being a woman, we are capable to wear many different hats from home to public life: girlfriend, wife, daughter, sister, mother, grandma, aunt, granddaughter, babysitter, cook, baker, gardener, driver, teacher, student, warrior, nurse, doctor, mentor, handywoman, engineer, technician, lawyer, judge, filmmaker, artist, entrepreneur, volunteer and leader……On this global day, every woman needs to be appreciated for her hard working inside and outside of family and empowered by a world of possibilities to follow her dreams. We need women to build a better world together, we thank all women from bottom of the heart for all things you do, support women’s rights and leadership in all areas of life.

Think big, build smart and create for change

We create, we build, we innovate, we change, and we are women.

Starting and growing your own business are never easy, especially for women. Female entrepreneurs usually face much more challenges from business skills to financial resources and industry opportunities. The reasons and levels can be varies by countries and regions, such as male domination and gender gap, lack of gender equality and equal rights at workplace about business skills training and professional opportunities…building smart solutions are necessary to make the world a balancer and better place, and all deserves to be treated equal regardless of gender, ethnicity or race.

Today is International Women’s Day – March 8, the UN theme for IWD this year focuses on innovative ways to advance gender equality and the empowerment of women:
Think equal,
Build smart,
Innovate for change.
So what’s the meaningful way to celebrate Women’s Day? Do our effort to care women more and treat them one day for anything, or make a call to action for everyone’s participation and contribution to build a balancer and better future with innovative spirit and mindset…

Empowering women is definitely good for unleashing success. Women’s empowerment means a business woman can access resources and grow her business based on equal footing and competing with business men. Working women, professional women, business women, all women are great and deserve for the equal rights and opportunities across the industries.IWD 2019_EN_InFocus 960x450

Women who tech

This past January, the annual showcase of consumer technology innovation CES kicked off the new year 2019 as usual. As the largest influential technology event, the Consumer Electronics Show drew a big crowd all over the world including business leaders and thinkers, industry professionals and innovators, creative players and women in tech.

From smart cities to 5G, from drones to self-driving technology, from AI to robotics…this is truly a global stage to connect, learn and be inspired about disruptive technology and innovation. I experienced AI powered playground and smart home, visited innovation awards showcase, talked to virtual assistants and robots, met some great entrepreneurs at networking events, connected with multiple startups for further discussion…What I learned from CES? Get ready for a smart future and 5G revolution.

Technology is changing business and female-owned tech companies become a fast growing force in the Americas and the world. So how we can embrace disruption for good? Supporting women empowerment in this growing industry opens up a new business and develops a prosperous path of cooperation between North America and Asia Pacific in different sectors and ecosystems. This is indeed an opportunity to be part of this very energetic and empowered female workforce with the power of learning and networking.

Among many world-class speakers and panels at conferences, some women brought their innovative ideas on some mind-blowing topics, such as be your own boss in sports technology, a keynote discussion on data, blockchain, AI and computing, create content to connect with audiences and branding strategy…when women get together and learn from each other, to share best practices and conduct discussions about the latest trends, all women can benefit from it. We all play different professional roles like Emmy Award winning journalist, CEO and CMO, founder and entrepreneur…and we are also women in tech as innovators and disruptors shaping the future of technology.

Women who create

Creativity is power, it’s truly original and inspiring.

Last month at the 91st Academy Awards, Domee Shi, who’s Chinese-Canadian, won the Oscar for best animated short film “Bao”, she is also the first female director of a Pixar original short.

“Bao” is an allegorical tale about an aging and lonely mother who receives an unexpected second chance at motherhood when she makes a dumpling (baozi), and an adorable Chinese dumpling that comes to life as a boy. Eventually the child grows up as a young adult, he increasingly wants independence, while his mother wishes for more attention from him, feeling ignored. One day, when the dumpling introduces his new fiancée and wants to move out, his mother tries to stop him from leaving and finally eats him…Later, her real son enters the room, revealing that the whole sequence was an allegorical dream. Then the whole family sits at the table and makes dumplings together…

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Through this short film, the audience can get a taste of the great Chinese food, culture, and people that she grew up with in Canada. Shi said she used to take her Mom’s dumplings for granted, making “Bao” helped her better understand her mother. Shi shared that the journey to making this film come to life. Seven years before becoming the director of an Oscar-winning film, Shi began her journey at Pixar as an intern and contributed to multiple films as storyboard artist. Now being one of the first female writers and directors for a major studio, she said it’s been challenging to make the film: “One of the most challenging things is when you’re walking into the room and feeling like one of the only females in this room, it took me a while to build my own confidence, but I kind of use that as a way to motivate myself.”

Cinematography, photography, design, screenwriting, video editing, copywriting, content strategy and digital media production, creative minds come from our own stories, imagination, dreams, brainstorm and inspiration by others. As an artist and filmmaker, Domee shi won an Oscar, created value for her industry, and showed the creativity and innovation that comes from diversity and women’s empowerment.

To all the nerdy girls out there who hide behind their sketchbooks, don’t be afraid to tell your stories to the world. – Domee Shi, filmmaker

Women who change

Women are everywhere: tech startup and entrepreneurship, filmmaking and creative arts, innovative business and science, journalism and healthcare professionals…female leaders are shaping the future of innovation and making the world to a better place with their insistence for good and persistence in the face of adversity.

Today to honor Women’s History Month and IWD, it’s really important that we see examples of successful women and powerful women doing things that are outside the box, so people can have role models and be inspired. By celebrating women leadership around the world, let’s look at women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and design (STEMD) , and their outstanding inspiration to others including the next generation of female professionals.

Let’s check out this series of numbers from the Nobel Prize Organization. Over 100 years, 51 women have been awarded the Nobel Prize between 1901 and 2018 with 52 awards in total. There are
1 woman in Economic Sciences,
3 women in Physics including Marie Curie in 1903,
5 women in Chemistry including Marie Curie in 1911,
12 women in Physiology/Medicine including Tu Youyou in 2015,
14 women in Literature,
17 women in Peace including Mother Teresa in 1979.

They are women who changed the world with their inventions, medical research, writing novels, analysis of economic governance, thought thinking in new and creative ways, engagement in social issues and the peace movement…what they achieved are the greatest benefit to humankind. In 2018, 3 women among 12 new laureates of the Nobel Prize were awarded for their work and discoveries range from cancer therapy and laser physics to developing proteins that can solve humankind’s chemical problems, as well as combating war crimes. They are

  1. Donna Strickland, a Canadian optical physicist and pioneer int he field of pulsed lasers, who was awarded in Physics for “for groundbreaking inventions in the field of laser physics” and with Gerard Mourou “for their method of generating high-intensity, ultra-short optical pulses.”
  2. Frances H. Arnold, an American chemical engineer, who was awarded in Chemistry “for the directed evolution of enzymes”.
  3. Nadia Murad, a Yazidi human rights activist from Iraq, who was awarded in Peace with Denis Mukwege “for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict”.

Among these 51 remarkable women of the Nobel Prize,19 women who changed science with their unique contributions. From the early 1900s to now, they are scientists represented in this experience include biochemists, X-ray crystallographers, pharmacologists, neuro-embryologists and nuclear physicists. Some are the children of teachers, grocers, scientists and artists, some rarely left their labs, some travelled the world to collaborate with other scientists or to advocate for a cause. Each of them is as unique as her contribution to scientific knowledge, but all possess common traits: creativity, vision, passion and – perhaps most importantly – persistence.

With a new and more scientific approach to drug development, Gertrude Elion altered and accelerated medical research by creating the drugs and alleviating human suffering. Tu Youyou is the first mainland Chinese scientist to have received a Nobel Prize in a scientific category for her discoveries concerning a novel therapy against Malaria. And she did so without a doctorate, a medical degree, or training abroad. She turned to Chinese medical texts from the Zhou, Qing, and Han Dynasties to find a traditional cure for malaria, ultimately extracting a compound—artemisinin—that has saved millions of lives…

The world cannot afford the loss of the talents of half of its people if we are to solve the many problems which beset us.
— Rosalyn Yalow, Nobel Laureate

Celebrating and exploring the careers and lives of them aim to transform not only how we experience the powerful stories and perseverance behind their scientific achievements but also empower the next generation of young women to change our world.

Women are power

Innovation and technology disrupt business and impact our lives.

Women hold up half of the sky according to a Chinese saying. Actually women could hold up entire industries from tech and science to media and creative business by affecting the future of business. A growing number of women are business owners and decision-makers to bring innovation to the market and changing the way we work.

With education and hard working, women are not only tech users also digital creators. Social media is playing a pivotal role in their business decisions, with many popular short video platforms out there, and blogs expanding their influence in marketing sector and beyond. They build local business community and solar-power projects, connect with customers, and grow business with enhanced digital tools like mobile technology, cloud-based open source system, big data driven platform, online marketing and eCommerce etc.

Around the world, women are making an impact with this type of social media influence every day. Women’s fresh, relevant thinking also brings transformative change to the businesses and services that benefit our lives. Women and girls, who are not only consumers of innovation, but also become kind of innovators to engage, design and execute practical solutions from creative work and tech business to green energy and renewable industry. With a greater balance of men and women at some places, women have increasing opportunities to realize their potential and achieve their dreams in a stable and inclusive environment.

…as industries prepare to adapt to disruptive change, tackling gender gap could also unlock new opportunities for growth. – World Economic Forum

Who run the world?

Balance for better is the global campaign theme of International Women’s Day 2019. On this global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, it marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity and creating balance for better. The first IWD gathering in 1911 was supported by over a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. Over a century, many international groups from grassroots activism to worldwide action campaigned for women’s equality.

Gender equality is basically a question of power. According to the UN, women still face major obstacles in accessing and exercising power. As the world bank found, just 6 economies give women and men equal legal rights in areas that affect their work. Living in a male-dominated world with a male-dominated culture, gender equality and women’s rights are fundamental to global progress on peace and security, human rights and sustainable development. In recent decades, we have seen remarkable progress on women’s rights and leadership in some areas, such as increasing the number of women decision-makers and women in senior management, more efforts to protect and promote women’s rights, dignity and leadership…

When women rise, we all do

Innovation and technology have shaped the lives of women worldwide, also provide opportunities for women and girls to play an active role in building more inclusive systems, efficient services and sustainable economic growth to accelerate the achievement of the gender equality.

Innovation and technology reflect their designers and makers. From mobile technology to artificial intelligence (AI) and the internet of things (IoT), it is vital that women’s ideas and experiences equally influence the design and implementation of the innovations that shape our digital future. From UN Women to IWD community, from STEM education to global innovation for change, more and more initiatives and community projects are helping women and girls to develop coding skills and train the tech leaders of tomorrow. All of the work is not only to challenge stereotypes that limit girls’ ambitions and dreams, but also to empower them to play the decisive role in emerging industries by unleashing their limitless imagination and boundless strength.

Balance drives a better working world. Building our world so that it works for everyone with innovative ways and smart solutions are upon us. To create long-term sustained global community and sustainable economic growth, everyone’s contribution counts. Industry leaders, game changers, social entrepreneurs and women innovators… on one is left behind, everyone has a part to play – all the time, everywhere.

We are women

We are women, do proud every day for embracing our strength, drive, dreams, femininity, sense and sensibility, take the lead and be our own hero everyday.

Being professional women, we usually wears many different hats in family and at work, wife, mother, daughter, business owner, entrepreneur, founder and CEO…from household role to leadership role, women can do anything. When reflecting on our journeys that led us to where we are today as a successful woman, whoever your are a talented woman, a strong woman, a powerful woman, an inspirational woman, an independent woman or an influential woman…no matter whoever inspires you or you inspire whomever as role models, no matter whatever like community and connection motivates you or you value whatever like challenges and opportunities…be yourself and believe in yourself, we are women, we can do anything!