Last November, the XV edition of the Women's Forum Global Meeting 2020 was held.
The Woman Post | Mónica Liliana Pradilla
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For the first time, in a completely virtual way, speakers and exhibitors met for three days to discuss current challenges, the role of women in the crisis facing the world, and the space that women occupy today in leadership positions, in science.
The last few years have provided a progressive dynamic in positions of power, women are already at the center of the events, leading changes and generating more diverse and inclusive environments, which have been largely due to the implementation of parity quotas in different social areas. Feminism, activism and politics, of private or state origin around the world, have largely fueled new perspectives. However, there is much work to be done and even more after facing this global pandemic crisis that in many ways reversed the scenarios, increased the responsibilities of women, increased vulnerability to domestic violence, increased workloads with domestic tasks and generated differentiated health with high impact on women.
Data from Ipsos France at the beginning of the forum showed that approximately 32% of women have been told at some time during their educational process that they do not plan to pursue science-related careers, 46% of women report not having sought, pursued or requested job promotions with a greater burden of responsibility for fear of not having enough time.
Chiara Corazza, current managing director of the forum, in her speech, emphasized that even in the new generations, 53% of women consider that it is not possible to find a combined balance between professional and family life.
The pandemic has put even more pressure on the issue by returning most of the professional practice to the home, increasing the risk of a retreat to the traditional roles of women in the home, in part also because gender stereotypes they continue to be widely understood and widespread.
A recent study from King's College London shed light on the voice of women in studies published during the pandemic. Women's voices represent only 5% of posts on STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), 15% of posts on economics, and 17% of posts on politics.
Generating a real cultural and social change that can contribute to the elimination of these stereotypes will depend on policies of equity in participation, as well as strategies that ensure that women do not lose ground in crises or find themselves in positions of additional vulnerability to those they can present themselves in a health crisis like the current one. Policies must change substantially and at the root. We must continue to work and hold government and leaders accountable for the systematic vulnerability of women, while making visible the key element and role that women play in the world. A key role, which will continue to gain importance and relevance in the future for any effort to promote more inclusive environments in which diversity is visible.
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At this time, the acceptance represents a low bar. Inclusion in industries is no longer just about accepting differences, but about valuing and celebrating those differences. The gap between the first and last is now highlighted as evident and younger generations to come are pushing for such policies on diversity and equality to be much more than an expectation, but a requirement.
Within the G7 member countries, this demand is evidenced in leadership and changes in the logic and balance of power and diversity in the large spheres of government, executive and social organizations (approximately 69 to 70% of the people are aware of the existence of a gender problem that affects mainly and mainly women). Furthermore, during the pandemic, it has been the nations led by women that have clearly managed the crisis better and not to a small extent due to the fact that they are more humane in their approach to crises, making decisions that span multiple social, family aspects. and cultural.
For Shelly McNamara, Chief Equality & Inclusion Officer and Executive Vice President of HR at P&G, change comes with the awareness and will of the world right now to make the necessary demands. It does not mean that previous generations were not aware of the problems and the gaps. Just as systematic racism, misogyny and gender stereotypes are not something new, today activism is much more focused on work, social movements are much more mature and willing to evolve politically to hold companies so much accountable as well as governments within the entire social spectrum. .
Quotas and diversity are important as a starting point, represent good market practice, and are both business and politically smart strategies, but they should also be seen as a moral and a principle for society. This means generating real-life environments in professional life and policymaking in which equality exists as a given to allow human beings to exist and contribute to being fully themselves and reaching their full potential that can really mean something. and generate real structural changes.
For Corazza, the distribution of budgets for incentives, public and private, that guarantee and mitigate gender gaps in STEM boards and professional settings is a more prevalent requirement than ever. Economic recovery must be recognized as the ideal space to address the world's challenges with a women-centered approach, supported by the experiences and successful results of our leadership and driven by this historic moment that provides the opportunity to restart with better foundations on the one that will work the world in the future. This is not the time for frontier politics, much less when the world has shown that it needs and wants a really strong moral, diverse and egalitarian environment.
The Women's Forum Global Meeting full info and panels can be found by clicking here.
Twitter: @womens_forum, Chiara Corazza: @ChiaraCorazzaWF, Shelly McNamara: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shellymcnamara-writer/