15 Apr 2019
Increasing women's visibility and empowerment in the digital economy would drive economic growth and wider social progress.
Nerea Martínez de Antoñana
27 European Member States and Norway have signed a Declaration to increase the number of women in digital and technological sectors. This statement is based on the Presidency conclusions of 6 December 2018 on gender equality, youth and digitalisation and the Declaration on gender equality signed on October 2018.
The EU is facing a shortage of ICT professionals. Inside the European population, 52% are women but only 15% is related to ICT jobs. The low participation of women in the digital economy has multiple reasons like the gender bias and the socio-cultural constructs. There are several ways of encouraging women to participate actively in the digital economies like fighting against digital gender-related stereotypes and promoting role models. Motivating girls on STEM studies and stimulating the re-skilling are also two vital facts to take into account.
To achieve this goal is necessary to create a national strategy to encourage women’s participation and broadcasters to promote a positive public image. Other important action is to stimulate companies to combat gender discrimination at work, for what is essential to establish a European Girls and Women in ICT day. Furthermore, it’s needed an advanced in gender-balanced composition of boards, committees and bodies dealing with digital topics; and the improvement on the monitoring mechanisms and data collection to set improved targets.
The Vice-President for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip and Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel highlighted that, “taking action to include more women in the digital sector, recognising the value of their contributions and talent is essential for constructing an inclusive, competitive and dynamic Digital Europe.”