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Marne Levine attends a panel discussion in New York. Photo: J. Kempin/Getty Images

An all-male founding team is no excuse for excluding women — they can find other female senior employees to include in their decision-making, Instagram COO Marne Levine said at SXSW.

Why it matters: Women still make up a small portion of the tech workforce, as well as leadership positions in business and other industries. That also means a lack of diversity in perspectives and ideas, which has been shown to make for better-run businesses.

It’s really important to make sure that there are ways to elevate other voices... That means going out of rank and bringing people into those conversations. We looked at different ways, other just going by seniority.
— Marne Levine

Differences in how men and women perceive each other and the issues is also important:

  • "What is different is the perception of women asking for promotions and raises” compared to when men do it, said Airbnb COO Belinda Johnson.
  • If there’s a perception among men that the problem of gender parity or sexism is fixed, then they won’t continue to make efforts, said Axios EVP Evan Ryan of men's tendency to believe there is equality in the workplace.

As for some men's apprehension in being around female colleagues alone, "my attitude is 'take on her on the business trip, just don’t go up to her room and harass her,'” said former President Obama senior advisor Valerie Jarrett.

The story has been updated with additional quotes.

Go deeper

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas convicted of campaign finance crimes

Lev Parnas, a former associate of then-President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Florida businessman Lev Parnas was convicted Friday on charges of conspiracy to make foreign contributions to political campaigns, according to multiple outlets.

Why it matters: Prosecutors said Parnas, then an associate of former President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, funneled over $150,000 from a Russian businessman into U.S. campaigns as part of an effort to land licenses in the U.S.'s legal cannabis industry.

Supreme Court agrees to hear challenges to Texas abortion law

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear two cases challenging Texas' abortion law, which bans the procedure as soon as six weeks into pregnancy, but left the law in place in the meantime.

Why it matters: The court is moving extraordinarily fast on the Texas cases, compressing into just a few days a process that normally takes months. And that schedule means the court will take up Texas' ban a month before it hears another major abortion case — a challenge to Mississippi's own 2018 ban on abortions after 15 weeks.

Officials warn 5 key tech sectors will determine whether China overtakes U.S.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

U.S. intelligence officials responsible for protecting advanced technologies have narrowed their focus to five key sectors: artificial intelligence, quantum computing, biotechnology, semiconductors and autonomous systems.

Why it matters: China and Russia are employing a variety of legal and illegal methods to undermine and overtake U.S. dominance in these critical industries, officials warned in a new paper. Their success will determine "whether America remains the world’s leading superpower or is eclipsed by strategic competitors."