Europe is in a debt crisis, the Middle East is shaking and there’s market panic at home. It is against this backdrop that Forbes presents the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women.
The women on this list were chosen not just for being on top but for being smack in the middle of Richter-registering events--and more. Their power derives from money and might, yes, but also (thanks to old, new and social media) reach and influence.
There’s nothing static about the list. Nearly half the women are first-timers or are back after dropping off. Some changed jobs since last year. Most were promoted but some changed tracks altogether or are newly elected to office--all evidence that women are moving up the pipeline.
Read on to see to who the most powerful women are, and why. Note: Members come from politics, business, technology, media, entertainment and nonprofit and were ranked by three factors: money, audience or constituency and power bases--or spheres of influence. For a description of our methodology, full biographies, slideshows, videos and more, visit www.forbes.com/power-women.
(AP Photo/Andy Duback/AP Photo/Evan Agostini/AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez) More From Forbes: 20 Youngest Power Women 2011 Power Women Drop-Offs World’s Most Powerful Couples The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.