You’ve heard it a actor times before — in the science, technology, engineering, and math industries, women are still grossly underrepresented.

Currently, women are only nine percent of IT leaders around the world. The figure has barely changed in the past few years despite one third of organizations claiming to have implemented assortment initiatives.

Women make up only 24 percent of computer science jobs — a abatement from 37 percent in 1995 — and make up just 11 percent of controlling positions in Silicon Valley.

While this botheration isn’t being fixed fast enough, the afterward women in STEM are dispatch up by arrest the gender alterity and alive to redefine the bookish tech industry.

Here are TNW’s beat picks for the top 11 women in STEM in 2018:

Sharmadean Reid


Georgina Ustik’s pick: I first found out about Sharmadean Reid through WAH Nails, a ridiculously cool nail salon she began years ago.

WAH was one of the first beauty businesses to advance Tumblr to advertise their work, instead of using archetypal brick-and-mortar posters and signage. By afterward Reid’s career, I abstruse more about the challenges the beauty industry faces, tech-wise.

After all, abstruse innovations about follows the interests of those who make it — not many beeline white dudes have a affection for making beauticians’ work easier.

Since then Reid has earned an MBE for casework to the beauty industry, began Future Girls Corp, an alignment that supports future female CEOs, and has launched beautystack, a belvedere abutting absolute beauty professionals to customers. Her assorted career has one string tying it all calm — architecture communities where women can learn and grow to be independent.

I also had the befalling to account Reid in London this year, after which she hosted a TNW Answers session. She’s intimidatingly smart, acutely entrepreneurially and tech-minded, and deeply aware of how the beauty industry has not been given the absorption it deserves from the tech industry.

Allyson Kapin 


Matthew Hughes‘ pick: The debate surrounding female representation in STEM (or the lack thereof) is often centered around front-line workers: programmers, scientists, sysadmins, and the like. But there’s addition part of this acute altercation that often gets sidelined.

I’m talking about tech entrepreneurship. Women-led startups attempt to get access to the adventure basic that’s all-important to fuel exponential growth, with 90 percent of VC allotment in Europe going to male-run companies.

Allyson Kapin tries to abode this problem. She is a vocal and able apostle for women-led startups, and a mentor to female entrepreneurs. She ally with allies and runs events across the world that offer access to capital, while accompanying adopting the profiles of the companies that take part.

She’s the boss, basically.

Kara Swisher


Anouk Vleugels‘ pick: Kara Swisher, co-founder of Recode, didn’t aback pop up in 2018 — she’s been a active force in tech and business journalism for years. Silicon Valley’s finest both love and fear her, as she’s known for her beeline up, sometimes ruthless, style of reporting.

So far the promotional blurb. Yes, Kara Swisher is a very able announcer and entrepreneur, but after alert to an account with her and Ezra Klein, I able she’s so much more than that. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a woman acclaim herself and her work in such a affably unapologetic manner.

The conversation, which takes 135 minutes, touches upon her early career, her time at Recode, and she offers tips for interviewing and reporting. She makes references to be very good at her job at least ten times, and not once did I think: God, she’s arrogant. Quite the opposite, actually, she’s funny, charming, and charismatic.

At some point, Ezra Klein asks her if “her personality has always been so….”, “Obnoxious?” she adds. “I wanted to say ‘confident,’” he answers. “Oh, I would call it obnoxious. And yes,” she says.

TLDR: Women everywhere, both in STEM and other industries, please take a page from the Kara Swisher playbook. You’ll thank yourself later.

Margrethe Vestager


Már Másson Maack’s pick: My allure with EU’s Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, is accepting a bit embarrassing  but her name simply has to be included when talking about affecting women in tech.

During her time in office, Vestager hasn’t shied away from using all the tools at her auctioning to make sure tech giants play by the rules, and that technology serves people – not the other way round.

She’s been the active force behind EU’s probes into the world’s better tech companies, such as Apple, Amazon, and Google — with the last one consistent in a record-breaking $5 billion fine for breaking antagonism laws.

For tech to reach its full potential, we’ll need to trust it — which is a tall order after a anarchic year filled with revelations of big tech’s adverse behavior (remember Cambridge Analytica?). One way for tech companies to regain people’s trust is for us to know that they’ll be held answerable when they break the law — no matter how big they are. This is absolutely what Vestager brings to tech.

Tarana Burke


Cara Curtis‘ pick: While many arresting celebrities and abstracts helped #MeToo go viral, the movement was originally created a decade ago.

The architect of the #MeToo movement and Senior Director of Girls for Gender Equity, has been a major access in the feminist movement which has led to assorted high-profile men losing their jobs after years of sexual harassment, assault, and/or delinquency — making male bedeviled fields more attainable to women.

Asides from Hollywood, many sexual advance survivors have been administration their #MeToo adventures on social media for over a year which has sparked a change in the workplace — and the background for a movement started with one woman, Tarana Burke.

Samaira Mehta


Neysa Tavianto’s pick: When advertisement out amazing women in STEM, we shouldn’t limit ourselves to adults, as 10-year-old Samaira Mehta has already able great things in the field, admitting her young age.

She’s a coding prodigy and architect and CEO of CoderBunnyz  a aggregation that combines concepts of ‘fun’ and ‘coding’ to get kids absorbed in STEM.

She first founded the aggregation when she was just eight-years-old when the company’s first board game was released. This earned her second place at the 2016 ‘Think Tank Acquirements Pitchfest,’ with a $2,500 award to go with it.

Now she’s alive on a second board game with her adolescent brother, Aadit Mehta, called CoderMindz — which will teach accouchement about bogus intelligence through coding.

To add to her accomplishments, Mehta has also held abundant workshops in Silicon Valley, attracting, accurately alluring the eyes of tech giants like Google and Microsoft. When offered a position to work at Google beeline after university, Samaira beneath to become an administrator herself. So, maybe her bearing will limit the above-mentioned gender bias in STEM and bring in more assorted antecedents for the future.

Kathryn Parsons


Callum Booth’s pick: One of my admired anticipation abstracts is because what career path famous people would’ve taken if they were born in a specific area.

You know, like the Brontë sisters world-building and story-creation skills making them absolute for movies. Or how Tracey Emin’s autobiographical art would curl on YouTube. Or, as Kathryn Parsons stated, Leonardo da Vinci being admiring to the world of technology.

Kathryn Parsons is a co-founder and co-CEO of Decoded, a aggregation that teaches people to code. I first came across Parsons when she said “[she is] assertive that if Leonardo da Vinci were alive today he would be acquirements to code.”

Not only was that right down my alley, but she’s absolutely right.

Decoded now operates in 85 cities across the globe and alcove hundreds upon hundreds of bags of people. She absolutely spoke about the accent of accepting the world to code at 2017’s TNW Conference.

Parsons hasn’t just been creating the foundation for a code-driven world though. Not at all. She’s been a active force across a number of campaigns that aim to bring more women into business and technology.

Rising up the ranks and affairs up the ladder isn’t Parsons’ style. She not only wants to teach the world to code, but also wants to make that world as counterbalanced and equal as possible. No matter what the future holds, if Parsons was born later, I can agreement she’d still be out there trying to help people.

Fei-Fei Li


Abhimanyu Ghoshal’s pick: Few people have abnormally impacted an industry as deeply as Fei-Fei Li. The Chinese computer scientist is known for her apparatus of ImageNet – a database that helps computers admit altar in images – and for ambience the stage for the development of modern AI.

Through her career, she’s also championed the cause of auspicious more gender and racial assortment in STEM. She co-founded the San Francisco-based nonprofit AI4ALL to expose high school acceptance from assorted backgrounds across the US and Canada to AI studies.

Li is also an apostle for advancement a code of ethics and removing ambiguous biases in the development of bogus intelligence, through her work and as a adumbrative of the field of AI.

Her next activity will see her run an bookish center at Stanford University that will amalgamate the study of AI and the humanities. Hopefully, that will see Li shape the future of how we access the next phase of advancements in this field – with humans at the center.

Janelle Shane


Matthew Hughes‘ pick: If you’re not accustomed with Janelle Shane by name, it’s likely you’ve come across her work, decidedly if you’ve got an absorption in bogus intelligence. In short, she’s the person who trains neural networks to do bonkers things, like tell jokes, or come up with utterly absurd degrees (let’s face it, a degree in “Psychology of Pictures in Archaeology” is annihilation less than walking the long road to a cashier’s position in Burger King).

Tech can, at the same time, be both dry and threatening. Shane’s work, however, is fun and playful, and she shares her analysis in a manner that’s clear and accessible. It’s for absolutely this reason why her blog is one of the few I get email notifications for.  

Dr. Mae Jemison


Bryan Clark’s pick: Dr. Mae Jemison was the first African American to travel to space. Born in 1956, she was a academic child who spent a great deal of time with her nose nestled deep inside books about astronomy, chemistry, and engineering. Dr. Jemison went on to study actinic engineering at Stanford before accessory medical school at Cornell.

As a physician, she worked in Kenya, Cuba, and a Cambodian refugee camp in Thailand before advancing her dream, in 1985, of abutting NASA.

In 1992, she became the first African American in space as one of six astronauts to crew the Endeavour in 1992. </p>

Dr. Jemison now leads 100 Year Starship, a DARPA-backed action that seeks to advance life on Earth while developing absolute plans to visit addition star within the next 100 years.

Elizabeth Stark


Ailsa Sherrington’s pick: A large botheration with blockchain is scalability – affairs tend to be quite slow, making it hard for a lot of people to use a blockchain at the same time. Without analytic this problem, cryptocurrency will attempt to accomplish global adoption.

Enter Elizabeth Stark, co-founder and CEO of Lightning Labs. Her aggregation aims to scale blockchains, making them much faster and able to handle loads of affairs at the same time.

While there are absolutely problems with it, she’s made it attainable for the industry to move in the right administration to try and accomplish scalability. This makes her kind of a badass.

On top of that, she’s taught at Stanford and Yale, advises several other companies, and was a huge player in acquisition the SOPA/PIPA bills.

Read next: End of year crypto roundup: How did Ripple accomplish in 2018?