Experts View

Revitalizing Global Progress by Empowering Women and Girls in Science

Authored by: Melody Lopez, Director and Chief of Staff, Crayon Software Experts India

Emphasizing the pivotal role women play in shaping a sustainable future through scientific leadership, the 9th International Day of Women and Girls in Science is themed Women and Girls in Science Leadership, a New Era for Sustainability. The special day encourages society to recognize and support the potential of women and girls in science, inspiring them to pursue careers and leadership roles in scientific fields. In discussing the theme, it is evident that fostering women’s leadership in science is not just about gender equality but also a catalyst for achieving sustainable development goals. The theme reflects a call to action, urging communities, governments, and organizations to provide equal opportunities for women and girls in science, ensuring their voices are heard in decision-making processes.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during the recently presented interim budget mentioned that there has been a 43% increase in women enrolling for STEM education in India and this is the highest in the world. While this number is inspiring and showcases the efforts in bringing women and girls to the forefront of science and technology, the current problems have more to do with what happens after women enter the workforce.

According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report 2022, where 1 refers to parity between men and women, Indian women scored 0.961 in educational attainment, but the score plummeted to 0.350 for economic participation and opportunity. While women may be entering the workforce, social and personal demands aided by an unsupportive and uninspiring work environment make the professional journey stringent for women. The lack of work-life harmony with the lack of opportunities makes it even tougher for women to rejoin the workforce after marriage, childbirth and other engagements.

As we champion women and girls in science leadership, let us embrace this new era, where their voices, ideas, and leadership propel us toward a brighter, more sustainable future for all.

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