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Designing women: Microsoft researchers paint a picture of digital transformation for 2017 and beyond

In this “age of acceleration,” where advances in technology and the globalization of business are transforming entire industries and society itself, it’s more critical than ever for everyone to be digitally literate, especially our kids.

This is particularly true for women and girls who, while representing roughly 50 percent of the world’s population, account for less than 20 percent of computer science graduates in 34 OECD countries, according to this report.

One issue sometimes cited for the dearth of women in computing fields is the lack of professional role models who could inspire girls to pursue their STEM dreams. So we asked our resident role models – women within Microsoft’s global research organization – to share their views on what’s likely to occur in their fields in 2017. And since it’s prediction season, we also asked them to tell us what’s likely to happen in 10 years.

The predictions run the gamut, from leaps in artificial intelligence and augmented reality to advances in quantum computing and DNA storage, across existing industries like agriculture, medicine and energy, but also entirely new industries not yet imagined.

To learn what the 17 researchers envision for the next decade, read the full story on Microsoft News Center.