Home Health More space for women (and sustainability) in Alice Acciarri’s new eBay Italia

More space for women (and sustainability) in Alice Acciarri’s new eBay Italia

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More space for women (and sustainability) in Alice Acciarri’s new eBay Italia

Technology is a world largely maleon the one hand and on the other: the fans tend to be men (or at least this is the common feeling) and in the top positions of companies in the sector, women are very few.

Technology is also a very world not very sustainableComputers, server farms, and data centers take up space and require energy to function. And the work on AI risks further aggravating the situation: today, developing one that understands our language pollutes like a person in 28 years of life.

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The future of eBay Italy seen by Alice Acciarri

Both issues (gender and environmental issues) are definitely at the center of Alice Acciarri’s agenda, which has been general manager of eBay in Italy, one of the main markets for the platform founded almost thirty years ago by Pierre Omidyar. She confirmed it to us herself, during a long and interesting chat, insisting above all on the first point: “We are a marketplace, so not only do we want but also we must be open to everyone, to all buyers and all sellers – she explained to us. Acciarri – There is also confirmation of this the company motto (be for everyone, ed), which in fact requires us to be for everyone, to represent all the people who would like to do business through us, to be open to diversity “. To be “different”, as they say in English. Which does not mean “different”, but multifaceted, multifaceted, varied and versatile. Welcoming for everyone.

Beyond the semantic issues, the point is that if eBay did not do this, even business would suffer: “In the company there are what have been called Communities of Inclusion, dedicated to the most varied topics and open to all employees who care about that topic “. For example, support for workers and customers of origin Indian, Asian, African or Hispanicthe one for members of the LGBT community or precisely for women.

Inside eBay, which employs nearly 12,700 people worldwide, 41% of employees are women (most in non-tech roles, where they outperform male colleagues) and over the years the company has doubled the presence of female leaders: “Half of the people who work with me at the top of eBay Italy are women – Acciarri told us again – and in general we try to be attractive to female workers ”. Mostly in 3 modi: “In the meantime, we’ll hire them”. That seems trivial but it is not so trivial. Nor is it easy: “There is still a big training problem, because there are still too few girls who choose e study Stem subjects “(the acronym stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematicsand we talked about this problem here).

It is hard to find them, but once you find them “we try to create a work environment that is welcoming to them, where there are female leader to identify with, to be inspired by and whose role to aim for “. Again: “The career opportunities are equivalent between men and women and parental leave is also open unconditionally to men, so that women can concentrate on their career if they wish”; in addition, the company has practically eliminated the so-called pay gap, reaching 99.9% of gender pay equity in the United States and 100% in all other regions. Finally, as regards the actual site, “we help the sellers on our marketplacebecause we want to bring our values ​​also outside and create opportunities for women’s business “.

Concrete initiatives to support women

In practice, what does this mean? “To give some Italian examples, in 2021 we financed some scholarships of the Bocconi University dedicated to female students in the Stem subjects; together with UnionCamere we have helped 40 businesswomen ad start a sales business on eBay, even with discounted rates; and we have set up training courses dedicated to women in collaboration with SheTech ”.

Internationally, the best known case is that of Mattel’s Dream Gap projectin which eBay participated and whose purpose is to change what society expects from women and at the same time what girls expect from their future: “This is the direction to follow – Acciarri told us, preferring not to comment on what he does. competition from this point of view – Here we are not talking about a race, but about progress for everyone and for everyone, a journey to be made all together. For us it is easy because we are a Californian company, and there has always been attention on these topics. I have seen a lot of progress in Italy too, but we really need a change of mentality that must start from school and from the world of education “.

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An image of the eBay Refurbished Program promotion campaign

An image of the eBay Refurbished Program promotion campaign

An image of the eBay Refurbished Program promotion campaign

Sustainable and refurbished consumption: so eBay becomes greener

Where much progress still needs to be made is instead in the field of sustainability, environmental protection and the fight against climate change, on which eBay can undoubtedly have an impact. If only for its size: present in 190 countries around the world, it has a global network of 17 million sellers and 147 million buyers and in 2021, goods worth over 87 billion dollars changed hands on its marketplace.

“We as a company – Acciarri told us again – have made a commitment to halve CO2 emissions by 2025, and so far we have respected all the steps we have set for ourselves ”. As for the customers, “we try to push them towards sustainable consumption. Which is the soul of eBay, given that in 1995 the site was created precisely to facilitate the trade in used items “. And this concept, that of reuse and recycling, comes back today with determination: “In March we have The Refurbished Program is also open in Italy (accessed from here, ed), where there are used objects cataloged according to the type of wear, following a category standard that sellers must adhere to, so that buyers know what to expect “. Also, there is the Sustainable eBay section mainly dedicated to mobility, electric bicycles and scooters, spare parts for cars and more energy-efficient appliances.

According to Acciarri, “what has happened in the last two years has somehow pushed us in a direction we were probably already going: the lack of chips, new cars and video game consoles that have become nowhere to be found and the skyrocketing cost of energy convinced us to make what we had enough ”. Or to reuse what we would have previously thrown away: “The pandemic has certainly changed our lifestyle and opened our eyes to previously neglected topics, such as attention to the environment, the climate, the future and to those who will come after us “. It made us a little better, strange as it seems to say today.

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