Committed to connecting the world


Mainstreaming a gender perspective in ITU and promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women through ICTs

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Gender Equality and Mainstreaming  

ITU seeks to become a model organization for gender equality and to use the ICTs to empower both women and men. We know how important the role of ICTs is to advance gender equality and empower women in many ways. One way is by encouraging young women and girls to pursue studies and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) for their social and economic empowerment, and by highlighting the value that women bring to the tech sector.​

Data Gathering and Tracking & Gender Dashboard

ITU regularly collects and disseminates ICT indicators related to individuals accessing and using ICTs. These indicators can be disaggregated by gender, age, education, labor force status, and occupation. ITU monitors and tracks three gender-related indicators that are included in the SDG Indicators Monitoring Framework: (1) “proportion of individuals who own a mobile telephone, by sex", (2) “proportion of individuals using the Internet, by sex", and (3) “proportion of individuals with ICT skills, by sex". ITU's Gender Dashboard provides a visual overview of gender in the ICT arena, in ITU meetings, and in ITU's human resources. Gender representation in statutory committees is also reported.
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New! Bridging the Gender Divide Backgrounder​​

ITU's SG Houlin Zhao an International Gender Champion

Houlin Zhao

ITU's Secretary-General, Houlin Zhao, is a founding member of the International Gender Champions (IGC) and commits to the Panel Parity Pledge which is to not sit on single-sex panels
As part of his personal commitments for 2021, he commits to:

    • ​​re​inforce efforts to help countries to have the necessary capacity to collect and disseminate/share global/regional/national gender- and age-dissagregated data on access and use of ICTs and digital skills; and 
    • help countries to raise awareness and promote the active participation of girls and young women in ICT related carreers and other digital skills to fulfil the demand of future jobs on an equal basis​​​​.   

Girls in ICT Day


International Girls in ICT Day is an initiative of the ITU to empower and encourage girls and young women to consider studies and careers in ICTs. It is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of every April (as established by the ITU membership) to give girls​​ and young women around the world the opportunity to experience ICTs and become inspired to consider a future in technology. Find out more on the dedicated Girls in ICT Portal here. ​ 

Network of Women in the Radiocommunication Sector


The Network of Women for the World Radiocommunication Conferences initiative was launched​ during the World Radiocommunication Seminar 2016 (WRS-16) held in Geneva, Switzerland. The purpose of the initiative was to start building capacity early on in the World Radiocommunication Conference process in order to encourage a larger participation of women as delegates, chairs, vice-chairs, etc. The initiative now aims to advance the goals, objectives, and achievements of #NOW4WRC19 into the new ITU Radiocommunication Sector (ITU-R) study cycle leading up to the next World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-23). 

Network of Women in the Development Sector


T​he Network of Women (NoW) encourages gender balance in the activities leading up to the World Telecommunication Development Conference (WTDC)​ w​ith the objectives to:​
    • ​​​​​​build, in the medium and long term, a community where female delegates support each other, expand their network, advocate and share experience and knowledge; 
    • promote the active participation of women in the activities of ITU and the sector in general; 
    • give visibility to women and empower them for larger responsibilities in their respective delegations, at WTDC​ and in future similar platforms;
    • encourage experienced female delegates to mentor ICT professionals in order to create a stronger base for women in the digital space. 
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The EQUALS Global Partnership

home-page-bg.jpgThe EQUALS Global Partnership for Gender Equality in the Digital Age is a multi-stakeholder initiative created to promote awareness, build political commitments, leverage knowledge-sharing, and combine efforts and resources for the greatest possible impact to achieve digital gender equality at both the global and national levels. 

Launched in 2016 by ITU and four founding partners -GSMS, the International Trade Center, the United Nations University and UN Women- EQUALS contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Agenda through actions and evidence-based research aimed at closing the global gender digital divive. The partnership focuses on: access (achieving equal access to digital technologies), skills (empowering women and girls to become ICT creators), leadership (promoting women as ICT leaders and entrepreneurs) and research (building strong data and evidence on the gender digital divide).​

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The EQUALS in Tech Awards



The EQUALS in Tech Awards is the flagship event of the EQUALS Global Partnership. The Awards are given every year to organizations and individuals working to help girls and women gain equal internet access, digital skills and opportunities in the tech industry. 

Individuals and organizations can nominate their own initiatives or those of others for an award in the following categories: Access, Skills, Leadership and Research.