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The Broadsheet: July 18th

Good morning, Broadsheet readers. Starting with Hillary Clinton’s response to the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17, here are today’s top stories:


• Hillary Clinton: EU should lead on plane response. The former secretary of state said last night in an interview with Charile Rose that “there should be outrage in European capitals.” Clinton added that it “probably had to be Russian insurgents” who shot down the plane and killed 298 passengers. Bloomberg

• Apple names BlackRock’s Sue Wagner to board.The tech giant revealed that BlackRock co-founder Sue Wagner will join the company’s male-heavy board of directors. Wagner will replace Bill Campbell, a former Apple exec who is stepping down after 17 years of service. She will join former Avon CEO Andrea Jung as the second woman on Apple’s eight-person board.  Fortune

Meg Whitman is now HP’s chairman and CEO. The company’s CEO was granted the added title of chairman two days after it was announced that interim chairman Ralph Whitworth would be stepping down over health concerns. Whitman, who has served as HP’s CEO since 2011, will join a small group of women CEOs in the Fortune 1000 who also hold the chairman title.   WSJ


• Mary Barra gets praised (not punished) on Capitol Hill. In her fourth appearance before Congress to speak about GM’s ignition-switch defect, lawmakers gave the CEO some unexpected acclaim. “God bless you, and you’re doing a good job,” said Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA). Other GM officials — like General Counsel Michael Millikin — were not so lucky. Millikin was criticized for allegedly not knowing about the defect for nearly a decade despite multiple big payouts to the families of victims.   Fortune

• IBM posts better-than-expected results. The chipmaker’s added focus on higher-margin areas like cloud computing and big data paid off in the second quarter as results beat analyst expectations. IBM CEO Ginni Rometty noted the company’s progress in monetizing the cloud — revenue from cloud services was up more than 50% so far this year — and emphasized its’ focus on mobile services.   Fortune 

• Andrew Cuomo champions ‘Women’s Equality’ party. The New York governor wants to add a Women’s Equality ballot line to the November ballot. Lieutenant gubernatorial candidate Kathy Hochul, Cuomo’s running mate, said the party would support initiatives important to women. The campaign is somewhat self-serving to Cuomo and his female running mate: Election laws in New York allow major party candidates to also run on third-party ballot lines like the proposed women’s party.  WSJ


Blippar CMO: The image of a ‘woman working in tech’ needs to change

Every Friday, The Broadview will feature a exclusive interview with a woman in Fortune’s Most Powerful Women community. Today, we talk with Jess Butcher, the CMO and co-founder of augmented reality advertising company Blippar. In less than three years, her business has grown to a team of 130 employees across eight offices. The company is funded by an undisclosed multi-million-dollar investment from Qualcomm Ventures.

CF: How did you come up with the idea for Blippar?

JB: My co-founders were experimenting with mobile image-recognition and augmented reality technologies, and together we brainstormed a platform whereby we could harness it for brands and print media companies to bring their physical products and printed marketing to interactive life. A game-changing new behavioral technology – and the birth of a new verb: “to blipp.”

Blippar is based in London. Is the tech scene in the UK similarly male-dominated?

Yes – when you look at it – but this can present more opportunities than challenges. There are lots of high profile “women-in-technology” networking and award/ PR opportunities and tech women are active in networking with each other around London.

What are your thoughts on companies like Yahoo, Facebook and Google releasing their employee diversity stats?

Transparency is great and raises interesting questions, plus exposure for under-representation. No one could deny the value of diversity in the workplace, but I’m a little against this information being used for quota-hiring. All hires should be made on the merit of the individual regardless of sex or ethnicity, but hopefully such transparency will encourage a greater diversity of applications for roles.

Transparency aside, what do you feel needs to change to achieve a better gender balance in the technology industry?

[There needs to be] a shift in the perception of what a “career in tech” means. Taking my experience as an example, I suppose I am a “woman in tech” but I have no technical skills. I’m told that I know enough to be “dangerous” – but I consider my technical input to be more about common-sense and building for intuitive consumer behavior. My skills are more in marketing and sales – which ultimately is what differentiates good technology businesses. Such disciplines are considered more “female,” but they proliferate within the tech industry as much as any other.

What is your take on the having it all debate?

You can do both, but something has to give and you have to accept that you can’t do it all perfectly. The reality is that you will miss that important end of the day meeting to do the nursery run or the first tooth appearing when traveling to speak at that conference — that one hurt not only him but me — but you can’t beat yourself up about it.

My work defines me to a certain extent and I love it. It’s important to feel comfortable with your work-home balance and commitments and have someone at home who wholeheartedly supports you in those commitments. Ultimately, pragmatism is the key. If you’re unhappy with the balance or the way it’s leaning, you change something – and I typically try to evaluate my choices after every 3-month block.


Gender quotas won’t work in U.S. and Canada. The controversial way to get more women in executive roles has a better chance of working in countries like China and Germany that “place a higher value on obeying authority and conforming to cultural norms,” according to new research out of the University of Toronto. Put another way: It’s much harder to tell Americans and Canadians what to do. NYMag

• A reporter sung happy birthday to Angela Merkel….and it was awkward. The German Chancellor celebrated her 60th birthday yesterday and, to make things extra special, she was serenaded by a reporter at a press conference in Brussels. The brave journalist was not the only one to wish Merkel a happy day: India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the chancellor up to give her well wishes, but likely didn’t sing. The Independent


Traditional gender roles do not affect women’s political ambition   Brookings 

 Giving women equal pay could fix social security  HuffPo

 64% of female scientists say they’ve been sexually harassed out in the field  Mother Jones 

Women will receive 70% of inherited wealth over the next two generations  Money

 ‘Pioneer of female entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley’ dies   Tech Crunch


I chose this venue because so many Indian women are working to empower themselves through entrepreneurship and education, information technology and microcredit. I want to hear from them about what we can do to provide more support for meeting their challenges and seizing their opportunities.

Former President Bill Clinton speaks about his recent trip to India to champion women's rights.