UN Women champions gender equality

The United Nations (UN) Women has urged all companies to sign and implement the Women’s Empowerment Principles to promote gender equality and women’s economic empowerment.


UN Women is the global champion for gender equality, working to develop and uphold standards and creating an environment in which every woman and girl can exercise her human rights and live up to her full potential.


Women’s Empowerment Principles, according to the UN Women, offer companies, including those in digital sectors, Information and Communication Technology, Science, Technology, Innovation and Mathematics (STEM),  Art and Design among others, guidance on empowering women in the workplace, marketplace and community.


The call by the group was in a statement signed and issued in Accra yesterday by Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women and Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, in commemoration of the International Day for Women and Girls in Science on February 11.


It explained that women and girls’ voices and expertise in science, technology and innovation were vital to bringing solutions to the disruptive change in our rapidly evolving world, adding that there was an urgent need to close the gender gap in STEM fields and actively promote gender equality in science, technology and innovation careers.

The statement said UN Women and UNESCO were working with partners around the world to close the gender gap in STEM fields and digital technologies.

“Tackling inequalities early within the education system is vital, which is why UNESCO works to stimulate girls’ interest in STEM subjects, combat stereotypes in school curriculum and increase access to female mentors,” it added.

Initiatives such as the L’Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science Programme and the Organisation for Women in Science for the Developing World, which provides fellowships, networking and mentoring opportunities for women researchers around the world, the statement added, were designed to encourage women scientists.

It said the STEM and Gender Advancement project were also introduced to support the inclusion of gender equality in national science, technology and innovation policies, strategies, plans and legislation by focusing on the collection of sex-disaggregated data.

The initiatives, it said was to encourage a new generation of women and girl scientists, to tackle the major challenges of our time including climate change, which 16-year-old Swede Greta Thunberg charged World Economic Forum attendees in Switzerland to ‘act as if our house is on fire’.
The statement said harnessing the creativity and innovation of all women and girls in science, and properly investing in inclusive STEM education, research and development and science, technology and innovation ecosystem would lead to unprecedented opportunity to leverage the potential of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to benefit society.

By Times Reporter

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