Think equal, build smart, innovate for change: That's International Women's Day theme
Dr. Lalit Kishore
The United Nations has announced International Women's Day for 2019 as "Think equal, build smart, innovate for change" to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.
The UN has urged the world community 'to focus on innovative ways in which we can advance gender equality and the empowerment of women, particularly in the areas of social protection systems, access to public services and sustainable infrastructure.'
"Innovation and technology provide unprecedented opportunities, yet trends indicate a growing gender digital divide and women are under-represented in the field of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and design. It prevents them from developing and influencing gender-responsive innovations to achieve transformative gains for society. From mobile banking to artificial intelligence and the internet of things, it is vital that women's ideas and experiences equally influence the design and implementation of the innovations that shape our future societies." states the UN website ahead of the observance to be held on March 8.
The achievement of the ambitious Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires transformative shifts, integrated approaches and new solutions, particularly when it comes to advancing gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls, it adds.However, to attract more girls to STEM fields, the educational practices and curriculum designs need to be made female friendly and geared to their way of learning based on emotive learning environment and use of collaborative learning techniques. Both learning environment and processes are required to be feminized, I feel.