We already have a great network of organisations and individuals working to achieve this through educational, vocational and mentoring schemes, but more support is needed - both financial and on the ground. We need more men to get involved too, as these are problems that affect us all. Things won't happen overnight, but I believe that change is possible
While such questions remain, the Liberal Democrats should not rush to welcoming Lord Rennard back to a position of prominence in parliament and in policy-making. To do so would be to show that it's 'business as usual' in the old boy's club of Westminster, and would make the Liberal Democrats outspoken apologists of an abusive political culture.
Quota implementation in Latin America has not gone unchallenged. Detractors frequently argue that quotas interfere with meritocratic recruitment, alleging that "quota women" are the female relatives of male politicians, thereby perpetuating - rather than destabilising - elite control. Similarly, quota women are criticised for being dependent on party leaders, lacking autonomous voices, and failing to promote feminist policies.
Being the second woman in the role is exciting for me too - a lot of emphasis is put on the first woman in a position (a role that has been mine on several occasions), but being the second shows the normalisation of female leadership that has taken place in the 30 years since Mary Donaldson become the first female Lord Mayor in 1983.
Power's action on the brain has many similarities to drugs like cocaine, and can cause similar changes to the brain, including, in extreme cases, a sort of addiction to power. Margaret Thatcher found it exceedingly difficult to live without this drug and harbored a bitter and unforgiving resentment against the colleagues who brought her down until dementia came over her.
What worries me most about Thatcher's death is not the Bieber generation tweeting their desperate confusion about why someone's name they don't recognise is trending. What is far more concerning than that is how Britain's only ever female leader being gone will impact the future of women in politics.
Thatcher was certainly not a feminist either in principle or in practise. She is alleged to have said that feminism was "poison". Far from seeing herself as a role model to female politicians, she actually promoted fewer female MPs than her male predecessors. She was the archetypal successful woman who revelled in being 'one of the boys'. But in a curious way the cult around her, particularly in the later years of her career, was one that could only have been excited by a woman.
The capital city's four million women residents are more likely to live in poverty, experience a wider pay gap, and are less likely to work once they have children than women living elsewhere. In fact, London has the lowest level of maternal employment in the country: just over half of the city's mothers with dependent children work - compared to almost two thirds across the UK.