2013 - Indra Andersson Santiago
The 13th winner of Female Economist of the Year is announced - Indra Andersson Santiago.
Indra's speech at the Gala Ceremony
Thank you, your excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, BBBs, friends and family. Its hard to express how extremely happy I am standing here today, and how honored I feel to receive this scholarship as the 13th Female Economist of the Year.
Number 13 has always been my lucky number, and when we entered in to 2013 I had a strong feeling that this year would become something special. Now, standing here as the 13th Female Economist of the Year, I can say I was right? My journey during my years at Stockholm School of Economics has been truly amazing, and I believe that a quote by George Bernard Shaw captures it in a good way. He said that life is not about finding yourself; instead life is about creating yourself. However, George Bernard Shaw was a man and I wonder if Georgina Bernarda Shaw would have said the same. Because the way the society is structured today, it is not always as easy for us women. I have an uncle, his name is Johan and he is 51 years old. Comparing him with the most common characteristics of a CEO of a Swedish listed company we can see that they share a lot. Because fact is, the typical Swedish CEO of a listed company is a 51 year old man named Johan, and he holds a degree from Stockholm School of Economics. At least I have something. But as for today, this would probably not take me very far, since there are more Johans at CEO positions than there are women in total on those positions. This example demonstrates the reason why we are all here today and why there must be a change.
I know that there are many talented women that could take Johan's place if they would get the chance. I also believe that it is not only about finding these women and giving them these positions, it is also about creating strong female leaders, and ensuring that women are given the same opportunities as men to develop into successful leaders. This scholarship and the BBB and friends network is an important force in increasing the competition for all the Johan’s. To create a real change, we have to start early. It is not about not buying pink clothes for young girls and calling them hen, rather it is about strengthening young girls beliefs in themselves, and to communicate that the only way to win is to dare to try. As the Female Economist of the Year, I hope that I will be able to inspire other girls by talking about the importance of dreaming, planning and executing - and of course, daring.
Before I finish, I want to express my sincere thanks. To SSE, for providing me with such a good solid academic education, and for opening so many doors. To The Boston Consulting Group for supporting this scholarship and for believing in my potential as a consultant. To the rest of the selection committee for engaging in this scholarship, and for believing in my potential to become a role model for young women. To the members of BBB and previous winners, in particular Helena and Klaudyna, thank you so much for your encouragement. To Veronica, Jonas and Eva, thank you for all your work with this event. To my beloved family, thank you for always supporting me in my decisions. And last, but definitely not least, thank you Barbro. For creating this scholarship and for working so passionately with promoting future female business leaders. For creating amazing opportunities for young women and for being an incredible source of inspiration.