scientific research

Día Internacional de la Mujer y la Niña en la Ciencia

11 de febrero

El 22 de diciembre de 2015, la Asamblea General decidió establecer un Día Internacional anual para reconocer el rol crítico que juegan las mujeres y las niñas en la ciencia y la tecnología, a través de la Resolución A/RES/70/212.

The International Day of Women and Girls in Science, celebrated on 11 February, is implemented by UNESCO and UN-Women, in collaboration institutions and civil society partners that aim to promote women and girls in science. This Day is an opportunity to promote full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls.

La igualdad entre hombres y mujeres es una prioridad global de la UNESCO, y el apoyo a las jóvenes, su educación y su plena capacidad para hacer oír sus ideas son los motores del desarrollo y la paz.

Women_Science

Hacer frente a algunos de los mayores desafíos de la Agenda para el Desarrollo Sostenible -desde la mejora de la salud hasta el cambio climático- dependerá del aprovechamiento de todos los talentos. Eso significa conseguir introducir a más mujeres en estos campos. La diversidad en la investigación amplía el número de investigadores talentosos, aportando una nueva perspectiva, talento y creatividad. Este Día es un recordatorio de que las mujeres y las niñas desempeñan un papel fundamental en las comunidades de ciencia y tecnología y que su participación debe fortalecerse.

UNESCO research

shows women career scientists still face gender bias

Creative Resilience

Art by Women in Science

"Debemos poner en práctica el principio de igualdad para que la ciencia sea favorable a las  mujeres,  porque  con  demasiada  frecuencia  funciona  en  su  contra,  por  ejemplo,  cuando  los  algoritmos  perpetúan  los  prejuicios  de  sus  programadores."
Audrey Azoulay & Sima Bahous
Leer el mensaje completo
2008
0000380554
Shamila Nair-Bedouelle, Assistant Director-General for Natural Sciences, UNESCO, speaks to the participants of the celebration of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2022 at Expo 2020 Dubai.

LO QUE LA UNESCO ESTÁ HACIENDO PARA LA IGUALDAD DE GENERO

Organización de Mujeres Científicas del Mundo en Desarrollo (OWSD)
Premio Internacional L'Oréal-UNESCO para la Mujer y la Ciencia

This programme seeks to recognise women researchers contributions in today's global challenges.

La educación de las niñas y las mujeres en ciencias, tecnología, ingeniería y matemáticas (STEM)

Too many girls and women are held back by biases and social norms influencing the quality of their education.

CTIM y fomento de la igualdad de género (proyecto SAGA)

To strengthen UNESCO’s work in support of gender equality in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI).

Agua y género

Gender inequalities in the water domain are deep and persist at all levels.

Despite a shortage of skills in technological fields that are driving the Fourth Industrial Revolution, women still only account for 28% of engineering graduates and 40% of graduates in computer science and informatics, according to the forthcoming UNESCO Science Report whose chapter on gender in science, entitled To be Smart the Digital Revolution will Need to be Inclusive, shows women career scientists still face gender bias.

To be smart, the digital revolution will need to be inclusive, is part of the UNESCO Science Report: the Race against Time for Smarter Development. The full report tracks trends and developments in science governance worldwide every five years. The latest edition has a dual focus on the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and on the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Women_scientist

Gender Equality in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI)

Gender equality in STI is crucial and urgent to enable us to attain sustainable development.

  • To achieve the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda, we need to accelerate our collective efforts to solve challenges faced by the people and the planet. Science is our powerful tool to create sustainable solutions for issues such as poverty, health, climate change, water and energy resources.
  • The under-representation of women in STEM translates into the loss of a critical mass of talent, thoughts and ideas, which hinders countries from reaching their maximum development potential.
  • Science and scientific discoveries/research can bring life-changing benefits, especially for those who are furthest behind.

Gender equality in STI protects and promotes the quality and social relevance of science.

  • Science reflect the people who make it. If there is gender imbalance in the number of scientists/researchers, innovators or leadership, it is highly likely that the infrastructure or services being discovered and developed will not take into account the specific needs of other parts of the population.
  • Gender equality and access to science are both recognized as human rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. To achieve the SDGs by 2030, we need to harness science’s full potential, by empowering all members of our society to identify problems and create innovative solutions.
  • It has been demonstrated that when women contribute, with their particular perspectives, priorities and approaches to Research and Development, the questions asked, and the solutions created are more diverse and more societally relevant.
  • Sustainable development requires stronger science and more scientists. No country can afford to waste the talent of half of its population.

We still have a long way to go to tackle the challenges that remain for women and girls in regard to science, innovation, technology and engineering.

  • Gender Equality in STI at all levels of education and research is pivotal in encouraging and empowering the role of women in society. We need to break gender stereotypes and expose young generations to women role models in science sectors.
  • Significant gender gaps in ownership and the use of technology products need to be addressed.
  • The business community has a stake in, and a responsibility for, gender equality and women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and community.
    • UN Women calls upon all companies to adopt WEPs as a global norm and framework for responsible business conduct for gender equality and women’s empowerment. Nearly 2,800 CEOs have already adopted WEPs
  • Science and research institutions and companies need to offer reintegration and training for women returning the to the fast-moving science, technology and innovation sectors after maternity leave.
  • Time is Now: as we mark the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action – the most visionary agenda for women’s rights and empowerment globally –and the global community takes stock of progress made for women’s rights, the year 2020 represents an unmissable opportunity to mobilize global action to achieve gender equality and human rights of all women and girls.

Facts & Figures

Although STEM fields are widely regarded as critical to national economies, so far most countries, no matter their level of development, have not achieved gender equality in STEM.
28.8%
global average percentage of female researchers

and only 35% of all students in STEM related fields of study are women

30%
of all countries

with data available on the national share of women researchers had reached parity in 2016

Despite statistics that show close performance

of girls and boys in science and mathematics, strong gendered stereotypes prevail. Therefore, many girls are still less encouraged in science, technology, engineering and maths and have limited choices (if any) for their education and career development.

Even countries that have reached gender parity

in terms of researchers are still facing important challenges in achieving it in all aspects, since vertical and horizontal segregation persist as barriers.

Women occupy a small minority of top-level positions

despite an improvement in recent years and only 22 women have been awarded a Nobel prize in a scientific discipline to date.

The 2030 Agenda includes a bold commitment "to leave no one behind."

to shed a light on the intersecting inequalities through the collection & analysis of data that are systematically disaggregated by sex, age, income, location, disability, race & ethnicity & other relevant factor.

Policies

  • Despite the efforts to date to bridge the gender gaps in STEM education and S&E careers, gaps still exist at different levels of education and career progression and increase at the higher levels These gaps are partly a consequence of extant long-term STI policies at various levels
  • A holistic approach must be adopted to overcome the challenges in STI policies in order to improve all careers in S&E and to improve the quality of scientific research and innovation.
  • Monitoring progress in terms of gender equality in STI and equal participation  in  STEM fields, including measures and actions to support efforts in the promotion of women in STI, should be prioritized in all countries.
  • Promoting the participation of women and girls in science means changing mindsets, fighting gender stereotypes and biases that limit girls’ passions, expectations and professional goals since their early childhood.
  • Women Leaders are essential as catalysts for change, as they serve to empower other women in the same professions, raise awareness of the barriers they face, and act as role models.

Open Science

  • In the global movement towards Open Science, i.e. making science more accessible, scientific process more inclusive and the outputs of science more readily available and relevant for society, gender equality in STI will be key.
  • We all have a Human Right to have access to knowledge, and to contribute to creating new knowledge, regardless of our gender, our origins, or the color of our skin. The UNESCO Recommendation on Open Science (adopted in 2021) defines shared values and principles that makes science inclusive and beneficial for all. Thus, gender equality in science is fundamental in the process of developing this recommendation.  
  • The gender dimension must be considered in all efforts aimed at opening science to society, as we cannot afford to waste the talent of half of the world’s population Men and boys should be educated and encouraged to acknowledge and support the role of women in science. This should be addressed at all levels of education, research and policymaking.

UNESCO is playing a key role in in promoting women and girls in and for science. UNESCO also assists Member States to identify STI  gender gaps, devise policies and actions to reduce these gaps, and measure their progress towards gender equality.

Today more than ever, we need to keep working for a more equitable world. A world where women and men have the same opportunities. A world where women do not have to face barriers in scientific careers and where they can reach their full potential.
Since peace is built in the minds of men and women, we cannot leave any minds behind in building science for peace.

Young girl stem engineering
UNESCO Recommendation on Open Science
UNESCO
2021
UNESCO
0000379949

Accelerating Gender Equality in the water domain

Achieving gender equality in the water domain is crucial in view of the global commitments enshrined in the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development and in numerous other international gender- and water-related commitments. However, an extensive analysis carried out by the UNESCO World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) and its dedicated ‘Water and Gender Working Group’, formed by over 50 experts from UN Agencies, governmental water offices from Member States, universities and NGOs, has shown that progress towards the realization of these global promises is off track. Indeed, the analysis shows that gender inequalities in the water domain are severe and persist at all levels.

Learn more

Visions

Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD)

The scientists saving Malawi’s crops
Battling bias in AI
The female future of science in Africa

Publications

Telling SAGA: improving measurement and policies for gender equality in science, technology and innovation
UNESCO
2018
0000266102
Cracking the code: girls' and women's education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)
UNESCO
2017
UNESCO
0000253479