Turkey’s largest companies are increasingly assigning women to key positions and corporate boards. Of the top executives in these companies, 26 percent are women - well above the EU average.
Just last week, Siemens, the German engineering giant, elected renowned Turkish business women Güler Sabanci to its supervisory board. She is a member of the Sabanci family, one of the wealthiest in Turkey, but it is her individual efforts and achievements as the head of the family conglomerate which have earned her international acclaim. She was named by Forbes in 2012 to its list of the world's most powerful 100 women.
The selection of Sabanci, however, came as a surprise to many in Europe. Turkey is more famous in Western media for unpleasant headlines, such as the rise of political Islam, the headscarf debate, violence against women, or her comments on extrajudicial killings.
But now, Sabanci has prompted fresh interest in the West on the role of women in Turkey's business world.
While the European Union is busy discussing ways to increase the number of women in top position with a gender quota, Turkey's largest companies have already set the pace with an impressive number of successful women executives in top corporations.
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