James Burke lecture “Axmakers of the Twenty-first Century” at Ball State University, 1992

James Burke, Great Britain’s foremost commentator on science and technology, maintains that history is the result of “nudges”–Small events which trigger monumental chain reactions that in turn determine the course of mankind. Beginning with the stone ax “nudge” Burke examines the scientific and technological developments of other nudges and the way society changed as a result. Discusses the propagation of the artistic vs. scientific mind-set and the pros and cons of what he believes to be the next hand-ax phenomenon–the combining of data processing systems and telecommunications. Presented as a keynote address during Ball State’s UniverCity 1992.

Why Breaking Into the Boardroom Is Harder for Women

Businesses prefer veteran female directors over untested ones, research shows

Women looking to land their first board seats have a much tougher time than men, recruiters and corporate directors say.

.. BlackRock Inc., the world’s biggest money manager, this month for the first time said that companies in which it invests should have at least two women on their boards.

.. The proportion of women on S&P 500 company boards grew just one percentage point to 22% last year—up from 16% in 2007

.. her male boss’s network opened more doors than hers.

.. Recruiters told her that board clients preferred experienced CEOs and finance chiefs.

.. “To gain their first corporate board seat, women still have to overcome strong cultural issues that most men don’t have to overcome,” said Bill George, a former head of Medtronic

.. Many businesses prefer veteran female directors over untested ones

.. These women say they frequently get feelers about additional directorships.

.. “The only executive women whom many male directors know are already loaded up with board seats,” Mr. George said. “These men need to widen their aperture.”

.. Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s board, where Mr. George holds a seat, has no rookie women but three male first-timers.

.. Being a board neophyte disadvantages a male candidate less because men typically enjoy better connections with powerful men

.. “Women on the whole are outside the trusted networks of public company boards,” .. “So they end up with the bar that requires board experience.”

.. “When boards want tech or digital innovators, we see opportunities for women without board experience that didn’t exist five years ago,”

.. Facing the imminent departure of its only female member last year, the board decided to seek a woman savvy about cybersecurity—“an area where we weren’t particularly strong,”