纽约时报双语:比尔·盖茨夫妇究竟为何离婚?

“当她开始观察一些她认为基金会没有关注到的重要问题时,她开始发声,比如对社会和文化,行为改变的重要性,制度的重要性和兼容并蓄的重要性,”在斯坦福大学授课的医生加里·达姆施达特(Gary Darmstadt)说。他在基金会与弗兰奇·盖茨合作密切,重点关注孕产妇健康和避孕用品的获取。

“She realized ‘OK, I’m going to have to step into a global leadership position on this issue because no one else is really doing it, and I’ve been equipped,” said Dr. Darmstadt, who joined the foundation in 2008 and traveled widely with Ms. French Gates to places like India, Malawi and Tanzania. “I think it became clear to her that she had to use her voice on behalf of women.”

“她意识到,‘好吧,我必须在这个问题上扮演一个全球领导者的角色,因为没有其他人真正去做,而我已经做好了准备,’”达姆施达特表示。他在2008年加入基金会,与弗兰奇·盖茨去过很多地方,包括印度、马拉维和坦桑尼亚。“我想,她很清楚,必须为女性发出她的声音。”

Creating parallel ventures

创立并行企业

It was also in 2008 that Mr. Gates announced that he was stepping down from his full-time duties at Microsoft. He would remain chairman of the board and the company’s largest shareholder, but he said that he would devote himself to the foundation.

也是在2008年,盖茨宣布辞去微软的全部职位。他还是董事会主席和公司的最大股东,但他表示,自己将致力于基金会的工作。

Yet that year he quietly incorporated a new company, called bgC3 LLC, in Washington State, for pet projects that were related to neither Microsoft nor the Gates Foundation. There, he incubated work on climate change and clean energy that became Breakthrough Energy, along with education and health projects separate from the foundation, especially work on Alzheimer’s. (He changed the organization’s name to Gates Ventures in 2018.)

然而就在那一年,他悄悄地在华盛顿州成立了一家名为bgC3 LLC的新公司,负责的项目与微软和盖茨基金会都无关联。在这家公司,他孵化出气候变化和清洁能源方面的成果,后来变成了突破能源联盟(Breakthrough Energy),还有独立于基金会的教育和健康项目,尤其是对阿尔茨海默症的研究。(2018年,他将该机构改名为盖茨创投。)

In 2015, Ms. French Gates created a parallel world of her own, starting Pivotal Ventures, an enterprise focused on gender equality and social progress. In doing so, she was able to more fully explore interests that had been of little prominence in the early years of the foundation.

2015年,弗兰奇·盖茨创造了属于自己的平行世界,创立枢纽创投,专注于性别平等和社会进步。此举让她得以更充分地探索她的兴趣,这在基金会成立早年并未得到多少关注。

“I thought, ‘I want to have a company that has all the tools to work on social issues for women and minorities, even in addition to our education work that we were already doing in the foundation,” she said to The Times in October. “What I’m doing with Pivotal Ventures is gathering many other people around me to have these cohorts who work on these issues, and then also fund them at scale. We don’t fund things for women at scale. And we should.”

“我想的是,‘我要成立一家公司,拥有为女性和少数群体解决社会问题的所有工具,比我们基金会已经在做的教育工作甚至还要多,’”她在去年10月接受时报采访时说。“我在枢纽创投所做的,是把很多人聚集到我身边,得到研究这些问题的伙伴,同时为他们提供大量资金。我们并没有为女性事业做出大量投入。我们应该这样做。”

An organization ‘filled with uncertainty’

“充满不确定性”的组织

Former foundation insiders noted another force pushing Mr. Gates and Ms. French Gates toward their separate initiatives: Struggles at the foundation over staffing levels.

前基金会内部人士指出,促使两人离婚的另一个因素是:基金会在人员配备上出了问题。

“It was a constant tension point of the foundation. It was Warren who limited it, but Bill’s appetite is always, ‘We should do this, we should do this.’ Teams end up with this massive to-do list,” the former executive said.

“这是基金会的一个持续矛盾。限制人员的是沃伦,比尔的一贯态度是,‘我们应该做这个,我们应该做这个。’团队最终的任务清单非常庞大,”这位前高层说。

Mr. Buffett acknowledged in an interview with The Times last year that he opposed institutional bloat. “That’s the one piece of advice I don’t shut up on, ever, because it’s the natural tendency of every organization,” he said.

巴菲特去年接受时报采访时承认,他反对机构膨胀。“在这条建议上我永远不会闭嘴,因为这是每个机构组织的自然趋势,”他说。

Employees at the foundation often have to wear multiple hats to keep up with the demands. For instance, one staff member, Anita Zaidi, serves in the highly technical role of director of vaccine development and surveillance but also serves as president for gender equality.

基金会的员工经常得身兼数职才能满足需求。例如,一位名叫安妮塔·扎伊迪(Anita Zaidi)的员工担任了疫苗开发和检测负责人的职位,同时还是促进性别平等的主席。

Even without the divorce, the foundation was in the midst of change. Mr. Buffett, the third trustee, turns 91 this summer. Mr. Gates’s father, Bill Gates Sr., who was co-chair and a guiding hand at the foundation, died this past September. Some observers have wondered if the couple’s three children could get involved soon. The elder two are already in college and medical school. Others have raised the possibility that this is the moment to loosen the family’s grip and install a board drawn from professionals outside the inner circle.

即使没有这场离婚,基金会也已处于变动之中。第三受托人巴菲特今夏就将年满91岁。盖茨的父亲、担任基金会联合主席和指导人的老比尔·盖茨(Bill Gates Sr.)于去年9月去世。一些观察人士猜测这对夫妇的三个孩子是否很快就会参与基金会的工作。大的两个已经上大学和医学院了。其他人则提出这样一种可能,那就是现在应该放松盖茨家族的控制,将核心圈子之外的专业人士引入董事会。

“It’s a family foundation. Bill and Melinda’s names are on the door, which means anytime something changes there’s just this whole ripple effect,” said the former foundation executive. “You put this in the middle of it, it just feels like it creates even more uncertainty in an organization that’s always filled with uncertainty.”

“这是个家族基金会。比尔和梅琳达的名字就在大门口,这意味着只要发生变化,就会引出一套连锁反应,”那位基金会前高层说。“再算上这件事,感觉就是在一个一直充满不确定性的组织里制造更多不确定性。”

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