Editor’s note: is an entrepreneur turned academic.This is the first of two articles he has written about the lack of female entrepreneurs. The second article will be published Thursday. Wadhwae is a Visiting Scholar at UC-Berkeley, Senior Research Associate at Harvard Law School and Director of Research at the Center for Entrepreneurship and Research Commercialization at Duke University. Follow him on Twitter at @vwadhwa.

By Vivek Wadhwa, special to LTW

DURHAM, N.C. – I’ll bet that if Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs had even one woman on his executive team, the iPad would have been given a different name.

Otherwise why would Apple give its new device a name half of the population equates with feminine hygiene?

Apple isn’t the only company with a male-dominated executive team. No woman has ever been CEO of a Wall Street firm. Women were primary owners of only 19% of the 237,843 firms founded in 2004, according to the Kauffman Foundation’s analysis of Dun & Bradstreet data.

And only 3% of tech firms were founded by women in that year.

"Women are under-represented in all aspects of information technology, and IT entrepreneurship is no exception," says Lucinda M. Sanders, CEO of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). Women are "almost absent in high-level technology positions," such as chief technology officer and vice-president of research and development, Sanders says.

Women hold less than 5% of all IT patents and contribute less than 1.2% of open-source software, she says.


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