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Global Gender Gap Report-2018

  • 19 Dec 2018
  • 4 min read

Recently the Global Gender Gap Report has been published by the World Economic Forum (WEF).

  • India has been ranked 108th out of 149 countries in the Global Gender Gap Index 2018, the same as 2017.
  • The report benchmarks countries on their progress towards gender parity on a scale from 0 (disparity) to 1 (parity) across four key pillars- economic participation and opportunity (42%), educational attainment (4.4%), health and survival (4.6%), and political empowerment (77%).
  • In addition, this year’s edition studies skills gender gaps related to Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Key Findings

  • Global Scenario
    • Despite the global gender gap narrowing slightly in 2018, proportionately fewer women than men are participating in the labour force or in political life.
    • Iceland remains the world’s most gender-equal country. At the current rate of change, the global gender gap will take 108 years to close.
    • Across the four subindexes, on average, the largest gender disparity is on Political Empowerment.
    • Overall, the economic gender gap narrowed in 2018. However gender gap in access to health and education, and political empowerment has widened.
    • Women are under-represented in growing areas of employment that require STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) skills and knowledge.
    • Analysis conducted in collaboration with LinkedIn points to a glaring gender gap that is developing among AI professionals, where women represent only 22% of the AI workforce.
  • Indian Scenario
    • India has recorded improvement in wage equality for similar work.
    • India has closed its tertiary education enrolment gap for the first time and has managed to keep its primary and secondary gaps closed for the third year.
    • However, India continues to rank the third-lowest on health and survival, remaining the world’s least-improved country on this subindex over the past decade.
    • India has the second-largest artificial intelligence (AI) workforce but one of the largest AI gender gaps.

Way Forward

  • The report highlights the message to policy-makers that countries that want to remain competitive and inclusive will need to make gender equality a critical part of their nation’s human capital development.
  • Policy-makers along with all the stakeholders should fast-forward the process to eliminate gender gap and should take stronger actions in the years to come.
  • Industries must proactively hardwire gender parity in the future of work through effective training, reskilling and upskilling interventions and tangible job transition pathways, which will be key to narrowing these emerging gender gaps and reversing the current trends.
  • Given the depth of the talent gender gap in AI, there is a clear need for proactive measures to prevent a deepening of the gender gap in other industries where AI skills are in increasing demand.
  • The economies need to be able to harness all their available talent in order to succeed in the fourth industrial revolution.
  • Proactive measures that support gender parity and social inclusion and address historical imbalances are essential for the health of the global economy as well as for the good of society as a whole.
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