Empower or Lose: The Challenge Women Face in the DeFi and AI Era

The Disparity: Women’s Role in the AI and DeFi Landscape

Digital assets and DeFi are revolutionizing the financial sector, one of the most significant worldwide, as finance shapes countless aspects from politics and society to the entire sector’s structure.

On the other hand, AI is revolutionizing worker productivity.

A recent collaboration between Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and Harvard offers compelling evidence of this assertion. In a substantial learning and work experiment, 758 BCG consultants undertook 18 realistic consulting tasks, measuring their performance with and without the assistance of GPT-4. The results were groundbreaking.

  • Consultants using GPT-4 not only completed 12.2% more tasks but did so 25.1% faster.
  • Moreover, the quality of results improved by 40%.

This highlights the synergy between human expertise and AI and suggests a future of unprecedented productivity gains in industries, especially in finance and consulting.

We are all very excited with both revolutions. But there is a but. A BIG BUT:

The role of women in these transformations. 

Unfortunately, the current outlook isn’t promising. Firstly, a greater proportion of women hold jobs vulnerable to automation. A Goldman Sachs report indicates that 79% of women are highly exposed to AI automation, in contrast to 58% of men. This disparity arises mainly because women predominantly occupy white-collar roles, such as in HR, accounting, and administrative support. Such a trend could exacerbate gender disparities in salaries and unemployment risks, potentially undermining decades of progress made towards women’s equality by feminist movements.

Additionally, only 26% of data & AI roles are occupied by women. Similarly, while women comprise about 46% of the finance sector’s workforce, a mere 15% hold executive positions. If we fail to involve women in the AI and Digital Assetand DeFi revolutions now, we risk an absence of female CEOs in the future.

A fun observation: Using Midjourney (a tool I adore) to generate an image with the prompt “a picture, photorealistic person of the CEO of an AI tech company as Frontpage of Fortune 500 magazine” yields no female images. Does this imply the AI algorithm is biased? No. The AI mirrors reality, and sadly, our reality has inherent biases against women.

So, what’s the solution?

  • Encourage young women to explore tech fields.
  • Advocate for women in finance to embrace the DeFi and AI revolutions.

While many feminist issues need addressing, and most of us likely agree with them, we cannot always fight every battle simultaneously. We must prioritize. In my view, this challenge should take precedence because today’s actions will drastically define our tomorrow.

In Catalonia, we are fortunate to have a significant reference in this field, Karina Gibert, a renowned professor at Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) and one of the country’s leading AI experts. Furthermore, she is involved in various projects to promote STEAM vocations, a topic that Francesc Solà i Busquets has also been instructing with me for years at Utrans, where several projects in this area have also been carried out. There is hope. But this is an historical moment.

This fight is worth every effort.