Every month we like to share a recommendation from one of our ambassadors: something that inspires them in their responsible business work. This month we asked Sam McCarthy, Sustainability Manager at Nando’s. Sam has worked in responsible business for the last 9 years across academia, professional services and now hospitality. Specialising in environmental management, staff engagement and sustainability reporting; Sam now works for Nando’s UK looking at carbon reduction across the supply chain and leading their work around social impact. Outside of work, Sam is the Chair of Governors for a Primary School in Brixton, sits on Heart of the City member Hiver Beers’ Advisory Board and supports Heart of the City on their Board Advisory Panel. He’s one of this year’s Edie’s 30 under 30 Sustainability Leaders.
“I’m recommending the book Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Perez. Having had more time to read during lockdown, a friend recommended this book to me. It completely opened my eyes to how the world is designed, monitored and deemed successful using men as the default. From iPhones that are too large for women’s hands to cities that are designed without taking into account differing commuting patterns for men and women, every page was a revelation. The chapter on Women and Medicine which explored how women aren’t usually included in drug trials, or in medical research, because it’s deemed expensive and “complicated,” leading to more deaths and harder access to lifesaving drugs seemed particular relevant for today’s Coronavirus pandemic. Perez centres all these experiences through hard data, or the lack thereof for women, leading to bad decision making or an increasing amount of bias against women. One of Perez’s main points is how this is especially concerning with the rise of technology and AI that are starting to make decisions for us on bank loans or job applications for example, causing the situation to worsen for women as the lack of data confirms the bias and is directly written into code. Fascinating and equally horrifying, I recommend this for everyone, men and women, in the hope we can begin to make changes in our own lives, businesses and families to recognise and reduce the bias against women.”