Dhaka, Bangladesh
Help girls realise their dreams: UN chief

Help girls realise their dreams: UN chief

News Report The international community will observe today (Monday) as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science to ensure science and gender equality to achieve internationally agreed development goals, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In a message marking the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said the world must do more to change the workplace culture so that the girls who dream of being scientists, engineers and mathematicians can enjoy fulfilling careers in these fields. "Let's ensure that every girl, everywhere, has the opportunity to realise her dreams, grow into her power and contribute to a sustainable future for all," he said. The UN chief said skills in science, technology, engineering and math drive innovation and are critical to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). "Women and girls are vital in all these areas. Yet they remain woefully under-represented." He said gender stereotypes, a lack of visible role models and unsupportive or even hostile policies and environments can keep them from pursuing these careers. Guterres said the world cannot afford to miss out on the contributions of half its population. "We need concerted efforts to overcome these obstacles." He said the world must tackle misconceptions about girls' abilities and must promote access to learning opportunities for women and girls, particularly in rural areas. According to a study conducted in 14 countries, the probability for female students of graduating with a bachelor's degree, master's degree and doctor's degree in science-related field are 18 per cent, 8 per cent and 2 per cent respectively, while the percentages of male students are 37 per cent, 18 per cent and 6 per cent. In December 2015, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution declaring 11 February as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science to recognize the critical role of women and girls in science and technology communities and to achieve full and equal access to and participation in science for them.

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