22.11.2013 - UNESCO Venice Office

Women and Science 2013. Italy and the International Context

©Observa - Women in Science 2013. Italy and the International Context

Published in cooperation with the UNESCO Venice Office. Edited by Giuseppe Pellegrini and Barbara Saracino. 2013

«Yes, women are a necessity for science», the UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova, stated during a recent panel discussion on ‘Women in science – a necessity?’ held at the United Nations' Palais des Nations in Geneva.

According to UNESCO’s 2010 Global Education Digest, consistent gender disparities prevail at most stages of education in science and technology and in most regions of the world. This is especially true when women seek to cross the gap between education and professional life. Few women scientists are in top managerial positions, few women are patenting their discoveries, and very few women (5 to 10 percent) are indeed in the scientific boards of high-tech companies.

«We must release the full powers of innovation, to craft new solutions that are inclusive, just and sustainable should be released», declared Director-General Bokova, but it will not happen if fifty percent of our brain power, fifty percent of our creative genius is excluded. In order to release the full potential of innovation and creativity, gender equality in the sciences is essential to sustainable development.

Gender equality is an overarching objective of UNESCO and relevant programmes are implemented to promote women in scientific research. The UNESCO "Global Partnership for Girls’ and Women’s Education" targets the weak links of girls’ secondary education and women’s literacy, being education, training, science and technology linked together and closely related to the labor market.

The Observa team is a very good working partner of the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy). This joint collaboration has continued to promote the role of women in science and technology, by producing and disseminating data and analysis like those contained in this book which represents a resourceful reference for institutions, scientists and policy makers contributing to gender equality issues.

Observa website : http://www.observa.it

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