Science and technology is revolutionizing the way we live and work. The world has seen massive, unprecedented changes due to innovations led by growth in technology. Unfortunately, however, women are underrepresented in this sector.
According to studies, less than 30 per cent of the scientific and technological researchers across the world are women. To add to the dismal numbers, data released by UNESCO states that only 30 per cent of all female students take up STEM (science, technology, engineering, medicine) related fields when pursuing higher education. Further, women contribute towards only 22 per cent of the STEM workforce and only 16 per cent of all patent holders are women.
Clearly, these bleak numbers need to change.
As we enter the Fourth Revolution, participation from both the genders towards making the world better is crucial. Women can certainly bring more diversity and innovation in research by means of more creativity, fresh perspective, and more talent. Further, with pressing problems such as global warming and climate change, it is imperative that women break the stereotypes and long-standing biases and come forth to solve such problems.
To promote women in science and encourage more women to contribute to this field, the United Nations observes 11th February as ‘The International Day of Women and Girls in Science.’ This day promotes gender equality, celebrates women in science, and calls others to break the barriers and join the scientific community for the greater good of the society.
The theme for ‘The International Day of Women and Girls in Science’ for 2019 is ‘Investment in women and girls in science for inclusive green growth.’