}The official future says that women are moving toward equality with men. If not in our lifetime, we say, then in our childrens.Think again.If the rate of change during the last twenty years holds, it would be 2270 before women and men were equally likely to be top managers of major corporations.In The Futures of Women, Pamela McCorduck and Nancy Ramsey explore four dramatically different alternatives for the coming years. Using a powerful new way of understanding trendsscenario planningthe authors paint these vivid landscapes: Backlash, A Golden Age of Equality, Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back, and Separateand Doing Fine, Thanks. Each scenario has its own inner logic, firmly grounded in todays events, todays demographic and social trends, and in tomorrows technological promises, but each one derives from a different combination of the political, social, and economic conditions that could prevail over the next twenty years. The authors report from the recent UN Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing further supports their scenarios.The book began as a project for the Global Business Network, a unique consulting firm whose scenario planning methods have helped governments, policymakers, and business leaders create effective strategies for the future. Decisions take on new meaning when we can live for awhile in the world that would result from a course of action were now considering.Imagine a world where as many women as men are elected to the U.S. Congress. Or, a world where fear for personal safety causes women to don the Muslim chador on Western streets. Or, imagine a national economic policy influenced by giant pension funds whose managers and clients are mainly women. Or, a world where exclusive resorts cater to the sexual needs of busy women executives.Are any of these worlds in our future? Any one of them could be. Only by understanding how we could move from here to therehow the choices we make today could actually play outcan we hope to influence which future comes to pass.The official future wont happen, but one of these four scenarios could. The compelling stories of women living in these futures give women today the reasons and the inspiration to shape their own. }
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