Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Saturday, December 16, 2017 01:52:59 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter
BREAKING NEWS:

Gender equality? It's still a man's world

By
09th-Aug-2017       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Anna Shen  :
Gender inequality is the greatest moral and social issue of our time - and the world's most critical economic challenge. If half of the global population cannot fulfill their human potential, the world's economic growth will falter.
Gender inequality is the greatest moral & social issue of our time, it's up to all of us - men and women - to change the rules
We are being robbed as we speak: if women fully participated in formal economic activity, it would add $12 trillion to the world's coffers, according to the McKinsey Global Institute.
Drill down to specific industries - the tech sector - and globally, women face the most profound imbalances. At risk are the immense contributions to innovation that women around the world could make - if simply given the chance.
We are now in what The World Economic Forum calls the "4th Industrial Revolution," an era built on technology that fuses digital, physical and biological worlds. It is imperative that women contribute to the planet's sweeping transformation.
Imagine if women participated fully and their intellects, talents, and skills were fully used. Think of the products developed, technologies created, companies funded, and discoveries found. What answers would women find for the world's most pressing problems?
Keep in mind women's inventions to date: Marie Curie, winner of two Nobel Prizes, who discovered radioactivity, radium and polonium; Grace Hopper, who designed Harvard's Mark I computer; and
Ann Tsukamoto, who isolated stem cells, a promising discovery that could lead to a cure for cancer.
Sadly, the numbers speak for themselves.
Globally, women are grossly underrepresented in scientific research and development (R&D). Catalyst, a global nonprofit that works to accelerate women's workplace inclusion, reports that worldwide, females account for less than 29 percent of those employed in R&D. In America, which prides itself as possessing the worlds' most advanced tech companies, women hold less than 25 percent of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) jobs, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.
When women actually do work in the tech sector, retention is an issue; negative work experiences and a lack of support spur women to depart at alarming rates. Almost one-third of women in science, technology and engineering in the U.S. intend to leave their jobs within a year; it is worse in other parts of the world, as women in Brazil (22 percent) and India (20 percent) plan to quit during the same time period.
If one narrowly looks at the business case for gender, the argument is undeniable. Put simply, women boost the bottom line and add invaluable perspectives. According to a Morgan Stanley report that polled 108 tech firms, companies with a highly gender-diverse workforce grew 5.4 percent more revenue-wise per year.
Board representation matters too. Companies in every sector, not just tech, perform 5 percent better when they have just one woman on the board, according to Credit Suisse, which examined 3,000 companies. The Peterson Institute for International Economics noted that out of 22,000 firms surveyed globally in tech and other, 60 percent had no female board members.
Norway, Latvia, Slovenia, and Bulgaria had only 20 percent female representation in board members and senior executives.
In developing countries, gender parity could enable greater self-sufficiency. Consider the recent visit of Google CEO Sundar Pichai to Nigeria and the promise that the company will train 10 million Nigerians in the next five years, ushering them into the digital economy, a lofty goal that would open more Africans to the global marketplace. What if half - five million - of the newly trained tech workers were women?
Dr. Unoma Okorafor, founder of the Nigerian-based foundation Working to Advance African Women (WAAW), is working across eight countries to increase the pipeline of females in tech. She believes that fostering gender parity is critical to poverty alleviation and Africa's rapid development.
"Technology can empower women who are currently working in agriculture or at home. Many entrepreneurs are women, however, they are excluded from the formal system," she said.
Could a burgeoning tech sector wean these countries off foreign aid? If countries could train workers to think for themselves, Africa could change the narrative from aid to trade. "We could empower Africans to innovate for themselves," said Okorafor, adding that this is part of the goal of attracting women to careers in STEM.
The problem is in training and retaining women leaders globally, but discrimination exists in the funding mechanism - venture capital (VC) - used to birth companies. In California's Silicon Valley, where many of the world's largest tech companies launched - Uber, Airbnb, Google, Facebook - women face obstacles in VC; in fact, women-led companies comprised less than 5 percent of all VC deals in 2016. Only 7 percent of partners at the leading 100 VC firms are women.
This summer's avalanche of sexual harassment scandals at Uber and several prominent American venture capital firms have made global front-page news.
Unfortunately, for women in other countries, the story is also the same. In late July, the board of Kenyan software company Ushahidi fired Daudi Were, executive director, after an investigation of sexual harassment by a former employee. She published details online, recounting the disturbing impact of his actions. Eleven other women experienced similar incidents.
Access to capital is unmistakably powerful. Trish Costello, founder of Portfolia, a crowdfunding website that aims to create a new class of women investors, said that, "The goal is to design spaces that work for women in terms of investment vehicles. Men say that there are no female VCs and that is why there is a leaky pipeline, but that is not true."
Ruchira Shukla, regional lead for South Asia for the venture capital arm of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), gave hopeful news: "The number of women entrepreneurs in the tech space is rising. These women will serve as role models," adding that she is heartened by the women entrepreneurs she is seeing, especially as the IFC invested in a fund for female founders.
Recent discussions to raise women up are encouraging. Is it lip service? Across the tech industry, it is still a man's world. It's up to all of us - men and women - to change the rules. Innovation and the world's future are at stake.

(Anna Shen is an international consultant for the United Nations, an entrepreneur, and advisor to startups around the world).

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

International »

Trump promises `giant tax cut` as `Christmas gift` to Americans


PTI, Washington :US President Donald Trump today said the Congress has reached an agreement on tax legislation that will deliver more jobs, higher wages, and "massive tax relief" for American families and domestic companies.Trump recognised the tax reform as a campaign promise during his run-up to the 2016 presidential election, ...

Editorial »

Muslim leaders must continue to act together not to be ignored


WE welcome the OIC's (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) decision declaring East Jerusalem as capital of Palestine at a summit at Istanbul on Wednesday as the most appropriate and timely action to denounce US President Donald Trump's unilateral declaration that Jerusalem is the capital of the state of Israel. Their call ...

Football »

Players of A Level team, the champions of the Inter-Class Victory Day Football Competition of Manarat Dhaka International School & College with the teachers of Manarat Dhaka International School & College pose for a photo session at Manarat College field on Thursday.


Entertainment »

Meryl Streep is the most Golden Globe-nominated actor


Meryl Streep has begun her Hollywood award season dominance by bagging her 31st Golden Globe nomination, which is a record in the 75-year history of the award show. Streep won the nomination in the best actress, drama category for her portrayal of the Washington Post publisher Kay Graham in Steven ...

Entertainment »

Porimoni, Zayed Khan`s Antorjwala releases today


Entertainment Report :Today across the country in 175 cinema halls Malek Afsari directed and Porimoni-Zayed Khan acted much awaited movie Antorjwala is set to be released. On the occasion its releasing Pori and Zayed will enjoy the movie along with director Malek Afsari in Dhaka’s Modhumita, Shyamoli and Sony halls.While ...

City »

Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chowdhury handing over ICT Award to Director General of Health Department Prof Dr Abul Kalam Azad for his contribution in using digital technology in health services at Bangabandhu International Conference Center in the city on Tuesday.


Weekend Plus »

Quick recipes for the burger-lover in you


Weekend Plus Desk :If you are a burger lover or want to fix a burger quickly for uninvited guests, here are a few recipes which can save the day. Recipes by Chef Gaurav Chadha, in-house chef, Dr Oetker India Pvt Ltd:* Chicken and egg burger: Heat oil in a kadhai ...

Editorial »

Attack on New York City is disgusting


AN attempted terrorist attack in a New York City bus terminal by a US national of Bangladesh origin has caused widespread surprise and condemnation here and also in the Bangladesh community in the USA. The person Akayed Ullah at his 27 is a taxi driver in New York City and ...

International »

US embassy unlikely to move to Jerusalem before 2020: Tillerson


Xinhua, Washington :U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Tuesday the U.S. embassy in Israel was unlikely to be moved to Jerusalem before 2020, national media outlets reported."It's not going to be anything that happens right away," U.S. news daily the New York Times quoted Tillerson's speech at the State ...

Football »

Crystal Palace's James McArthur (centre) celebrates scoring his side's second goal of the game with team-mates during the English Premier League match between Crystal Palace versus Watford at Selhurst Park, London on Tuesday.


Sports »

A scene from the SA Group Premier Division Chess League at the Auditorium of the National Sports Council Tower on Wednesday.


Entertainment »

Akshay shares the new poster of PadMan while giving the hint about trailer


Akshay Kumar is gearing up for his next release PadMan which is all set to release on Republic Day, 26th January 2018. Recently Akshay is on spree of releasing new posters of the films. A day before yesterday Akshay shared a poster of the film in which he can be ...

City »

DU VC Prof Aktaruzzaman speaking at a seminar on' Mass Media Vs Social Media at TSC organised by the Dhaka University Journalists Association on Wednesday .


Editorial »

Colleges without enrolment should cease to exist


OVER 1,500 colleges are in fear of closure as they have failed to fulfil the condition of the Education Ministry in terms of students' admission at Higher Secondary level, The concern is genuine because opening of new colleges and also their closure is not small thing, as it impacts lives ...

Cricket »

A good number of spectators arrived at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium to watch the final match of the AKS Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Twenty20 Cricket between Rangpur Riders and Dhaka Dynamites at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in the city's Mirpur on Tuesday.


 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news