#BalanceForBetter - IWD 2019

‘An aye to that, loud and clear. For, in various spheres, there is a need to press for progressive policies that will ensure gender parity’.

This year’s theme for International Women’s Day is Balance for Better — and this means we need a better gender balance in income equality, in leadership, in safety and health, in education and all areas of life. Ideally this would mean a more balanced lifestyle without gender being an obvious segregator or the cause of disparity in any sector, from a company’s top management to the athletic section.

The theme’s objective is to achieve a sense of balance in companies and elsewhere, right from top to bottom. Women need to take initiatives, but they also primarily require the support of other genders to make a smooth segue to a state of equality.

Here are some inequality figures —

Women and men work the same number of hours each day — but women only get paid for 35% of their work, while men get paid for 63% of theirs.

Women across the world are under a constant stereotype, but gladly, it’s asymptotic and would hopeful be completely wiped out in the near future, with the combined effort of every individual.

2019 will look to inspiring industry leaders, game-changing start-ups, social entrepreneurs, gender equality activists, women innovators and people from a plethora of tech fields to examine the ways in which they could help eradicate barriers and create a conducive environment that promotes gender equality, hone in on gender-sensitive social systems, and build solutions that meet the needs of women and girls.

8th March 2019, marks not just another International Women’s day, but our combined diligent effort by members of IEEE Computer Society Kerala Chapter, to further women representation in technology and to cultivate a culture that focuses on talent, regardless of gender.

Equal opportunities for all will naturally attract a greater pool of talent, while also appealing to a larger customer and investor base. Greater diversity in the workplace fosters creativity, diligence and hard work. It can lead to creative innovation.

Research reveals that the gender pay gap in the tech industry is actually smaller than in other sectors. Considering the current scenario, in hackathons or similar events, women refrain themselves from the presentation segment and focus more on behind-the-scenes technical part. But today so many people are working towards improving women participation by conducting hackathons exclusive to women and by making it mandatory to have at least one girl’s representation in a team, which would further the aim of bringing more women in tech, to the forefront. While opportunities are bountiful, the future for women in tech depends on the IT industry’s ability to inspire young women to study technology throughout their school careers, and then go for higher studies in these subjects.

What can we do? Guide interested girls with suitable mentors, teach them industry skill, encourage them, and show them that tech careers will help change the mindset of the society they live in, and more importantly help shape their own lives for the better. The work does not end here. The tech sector must continue to encourage women and retain the female demographic. A survey conducted recently points to the fact that by 2030, women can and will play an important role in leveraging technology to benefit the society. 
So let’s all pledge to foster women talent and bring them to the limelight from 2019!