Why Girls in ICT Day?
One of the best reasons for this celebration is the job opportunities
available in the ICTs
The sector has a pressing need for a wide range of ICT talents: there is a
growing gap between the digital skills needed by employers
and the number of jobseekers with the required technical know-how. This
means that highly qualified women in technical fields will have a
significant number opportunities available to them. However, not enough
students are prepared for studying math, engineering, computing, and
sciences in higher education. Consequently, the number of female technical
students is disproportionately low.
ICT companies are looking to attract and promote women because
achieving greater workforce diversity is good for business.
The lack of young women participating in ICT studies is reflected in
companies and government agencies around the world. The sector is currently
male-dominated, especially at senior levels. Where women are present, it is
often in low-level, low-skilled jobs. Fortunately, many companies and
organizations are looking to increase the number of women represented in
the sector, realizing that increasing the number of women at the top
positively impacts financial performance. Those that ignore diversity
issues, meanwhile, risk on-going labour shortages. ITU, as the leading
United Nations agency for telecommunications and ICTs, encourages and works
toward gender balance in the ICT sector at all levels, through many
initiatives, including the EQUALS Global Partnership for Gender Equality in
the Digital Age, a global, multi-stakeholder partnership committed to
closing the gender digital divide.
Supporting the education of women and girls in the ICTs is also in line
with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),
in particular SDG 5, which is to achieve gender equality and empower all
women and girls through, among other domains, ICTs. Not only do jobs in the
tech sector lift women out of poverty; but also a more gender-balanced
sector offers fulfilling mid- and high-level careers, and enables highly
talented women to springboard to the top of the career ladder. This is good
As UN Secretary General António Guterres said,
"Gender equality is a human rights issue, but it is
also in all our interests: men and boys, women and girls.
Gender inequality and discrimination against women harms us
all. There is overwhelming evidence that investing in women
is the most effective way to lift communities, companies
and countries. Women's participation makes peace agreements
stronger, societies more resilient and economies more
vigorous… Gender equality is the unfinished business
of our time".