Lighting : February 2014 Lighting (v2-HR)
February/March 2014 | LIGHTING MAGAZINE 17 PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE This edition of the Lighting Magazine features women in the lighting industry, and I cannot help but feel that, taken at face value at least, we may be onto something here. When this subject was first put forward I was tempted to take the glib, flippant and hopefully humorous path and exploit the age old male vs female argument. That thought comes from me, to all intents and purposes a man, and prejudice is easier to treat lightly by those not subjected to it. As much as I like a laugh I abhor injustice more. I do wish to point out that my comments are not directed toward the lighting industry specifically but are generalised comments that are supported by numerous studies and reports on the subject of gender equality. Within the limited scope of people I know in the lighting industry are a number of women and they all are capable of doing what they do as well and in some cases considerably better than some of the men I know. This is no claim to the inherent superiority of women, no more than one can make a case that men are superior to women. Once you take generalisations like physical size and strength out of the equation the intellectual and behavioural spoils are divided quite evenly. No, I simply suggest that a range of abilities exist and that this range is largely independent of one’s gender. Why then, when the various abilities and skills are compared and found to be equal are the scales still tipped against women when it comes to pay, recognition and career advancement? I don’t know why this is the case, only that it is simply unfair. Reasons often cited in supporting the discrepancy go along the lines that because women are more likely to leave the workforce to raise a family they are a poorer long term investment. Leaving to have a family does have a flow on effect, no argument there, but it is an incomplete argument that is conveniently silent on a number of critical disparities and issues that surround that situation. For example, not all women have families, not all men are fathers and need it be pointed out the consequence of people not having offspring? Things have changed though and I have no doubt that eventually agreeable parity will be achieved as that is the only really equitable position. By way of an example is the recent appointment of Janet Yellen to the head of the Federal Reserve Banking System of the United States. This is arguably one of the most powerful and certainly influential positions in the world. She is also the first woman ever to hold that position, which she takes up at a pivotal and volatile point in the recovery of the US economy. If this degree of faith can be placed in a woman within an institution of such importance then perhaps better times are on the horizon for all women. That said it would be interesting to know what her remuneration package is compared to her predecessor? I am well aware that the views expressed in this piece can easily be taken as a shallow attempt at courting favour with women. Me, shallow? Take whatever view best suits you on that score because I am quite aware that I can no more convince you of my sincerity than I am in a position to take direct, corrective action on behalf of women as proof. I can say that from the Society’s perspective it is what you do and not what you are that counts. Barry Gull President IES: The Lighting Society A question of gender Established since 1986 | www.gammaillumination.com LED Lighting that truly performs Made in Australia Built on innovative thinking and revolutionary technology, the OPTIMUS reflects Australia’s pioneering spirit. Designed and constructed right here in Australia. Learn more at www.gammaillumination.com BOlD DeSign - BOulDer cOnStructiOn Boasting bold aesthetic and robust construction, the powerful Optimus replaces traditional energy hungry luminaires. The Optimus features RHD - Rapid Heat Dissipation technology for longevity and lumen maintenance.
April May 2013
Lighting April 2014 - Vol 34 Issue 2