To round-off the year, Forbes chose the women that it thinks are the world’s most powerful from the fields of politics, economics and tech.
1. Angela Merkel
The German Chancellor, who has been elected to office twice, the longest serving leader in the European Union, tops the list.
2. Hillary Clinton
She is currently running in the United States for the Democratic nomination in the presidential race. If she wins that and goes on to win the Presidential election, she will be the first woman President in US history.
3. Melinda Gates
Though known as the wife of Microsoft billionaire, Bill Gates, Melinda runs the philanthropic organization The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which seeks to support initiatives in education, world health and population.
4. Janet Yellen
She is the only woman ever to have Chaired the Federal Reserve Bank – the US Central Bank. She previously served as the Bank’s Vice-President between 2011 and 2014.
5. Mary Barra
As the first female Chief Executive Officer in the automotive industry, running General Motors, Ms Barra oversees $5.4 billion in investments in US companies.
The Director of the International Monetary Fund, has been hugely influential during global efforts to respond to the financial crisis, providing bailouts totaling $600 billion to countries in crisis.
7. Dilma Rousseff
The President of Brazil, Ms. Roussef, a former left-wing leader, is serving her second term as Brazilian President.
As Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer, she is probably the most famous and powerful female technology executive. She is also an activist for gender equality and women’s empowerment and a best-selling author.
9. Susan Wojcicki
Another hugely influential name in the field of technology, Susan Wojciciki is the current CEO of YouTube, responsible for helping the online video streaming service to achieve 1 billion visitors per month.
10. Michelle Obama
A highly successful lawyer, Ms Obama is also married to the current Presidet of the United States. She has used her position to support and educate women in her home country and around the world.