The future of the female workforce is at risk of unemployment because of various developments in the technological sector. In order to ensure that the women are not left behind when the country is progressing because of technology and they can actually benefit from the opportunities arising because of the economic development, governments, companies, educational institutions as well as the civil society will have to work in tandem. Business leaders and public policymakers, in particular, can take certain steps to ensure this.
Authorities need to gather gender-disaggregated data, for example through pay-gap dashboarding and put a gender lens on all training, re-skilling, and up-skilling programs to ensure that more women and girls have opportunities to move into jobs of the future.
They can also help in shifting views of women in STEM and tech jobs, and more broadly in non-traditional jobs. This includes showcasing female role models in various settings—in educational settings, in workplaces, and through advertising. Local women’s organizations, such as Azad Foundation and Sakha Cabs in India are setting up perfect examples by training women to drive and empowering the women and breaking the stereotype by providing them with cab driver jobs.
Authorities can support programs for STEM education for girls and specific “right-skills” training programs for women. The Tech She Can Charter is an example of businesses coming together in the United Kingdom to advance this agenda, while local women-led partners like STEMbees in Ghana help ensure that STEM education not only incorporates skills and mentorship but also addresses other locally relevant issues like digital safety for females.
The companies can fill gaps in government programs to help reduce the unpaid care burden on women and help shift gender norms through paid parenting and eldercare leave, provision of childcare facilities and subsidies, and encouragement of men to take on unpaid care burden through strong paternity-leave programs.
Corporate India can stand up in support of female entrepreneurs by sourcing talent from women-owned businesses around the world.
Only with the combined effort by the government and the commercial sector, will we be able to provide women with equal status, dignity and influence in the society.
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The CSR Journal Team