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High Level Forum Second International Day of Women & Girls in Science

Statement by the Permanent Representative of the Argentine Republic, Amb. Martín García Moritán 

February 10

“Gender, Science and Sustainable Development: The Impact of Media”

Thank you very much,

It is an honor for me to be participating at this panel on “Gender, Science and Sustainable Development: The Impact of Media”.

Gender inequality is a crosscutting issue, also present in science, technology and innovation. According to UNESCO’s Statistical Institute, women only represent 30% of labor force worldwide in investigation and experimental development field.

During the 70 General Assembly we witnessed important achievements in the empowerment of women and the addressing of the existing inequalities. Of course the most relevant has been the adoption of the 2030 Agenda, with a specific goal in Gender Equality setting specific targets to achieve it. The target 5 B is directly linked with this panel’s theme: Enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology, to promote the empowerment of women.

Another important achievement was the proclamation in the UN calendar of a day dedicated to Women and girls in science. I want to thank the Royal Academy of Science International Trust and the Maltese Government for this initiative which was supported by the international community and adopted by the General Assembly.

The core of gender gap in the access and use of technologies can be reduced with a crosscutting work since childhood or adolescence, aiming to deconstruct gender stereotypes that influence on the career choices made by girls and boys. Even today, while more women are enrolling in university, relatively few pursue careers in research mainly due to stereotypes encountered by girls to the family-caring responsibilities and bias women may face when choosing a career.

At the national level, Argentina is one of the countries better positioned in the ranking that measures the participation of women in the scientific activity. In the National Scientific and Technical Research Council, women are the majority representing the 52% of investigators and 60% of scholars. Nonetheless, there are still challenges to be faced, especially the low women’s presence in the higher ranks, representing only the 25%. Also in the media, men outnumber women by 2 to 1, another gap that needs to be addressed.

A proof of our commitment in reverting gender inequality is that Argentina will participate as a pilot country of the SAGA Project, the program of UNESCO for reducing the gender gap in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. In December 2016 we had the first meeting of the national team in order to define its implementation.

During 2016 we also had two argentine women scientists who were distinguished with the L’Oreal-UNESCO “Women in science” award for the development of projects related to nanotechnology.

Last year, during the International Day against Gender Violence (25th of November), the Argentinian Women’s’ National Council jointly with the Ministry of Social Development and the Ministry of Modernization, hosted a “Hackaton” in order to “Hack the violence against women”. This was an innovative event to develop digital solutions for women suffering violent situations.

For closing up, I want to stress that we must keep on working together in order to promote the full and equal  participation  of  women  and  girls  in education,   training,   employment   and   decision-making   processes   in   the   sciences in order to eliminate  all  discrimination  against  women.

Thank you very much.

Fondo argentino de cooperación sur-sur y triangular