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Dhaka Tribune

PM Hasina: Need more women in science for sustainable future

  • Right policies, institutions needed for young women to choose career
  • Women in science needed in leadership positions
  • Govt empowering thousands of women, girls
Update : 10 Feb 2024, 10:39 AM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday said the world needs right policies and institutions to help young women choose a career in science and technology.

“We need more women and girls in science for a just, inclusive, and sustainable future. We must have the right policies and institutions for young women to choose a career in science and technology,” she said.

The prime minister said this in a video statement that was played in the 9th International Day of Women and Girls in Science Assembly at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

She mentioned that it is important that women in science are promoted to leadership positions.

“In Bangladesh, I personally commit to advancing the work of our women scientists through recognition and incentives,” she said.

The prime minister mentioned that the government is digitally empowering thousands of women and girls across the country.

“I feel delighted to see their vibrant presence in the digital marketplace. We offer dedicated training for young women to help them grow as IT freelancers. I wish to see our young people with disabilities transform their lives through digital inclusion,” she said.

Hasina said that the government is expanding technical and vocational education for women to help them prepare for the future of work.

“We have made it mandatory for all high school graduates to get an education in science and ICT,” she said.

The premier said that in the past the number of female students in higher education, especially in science and technology, was not satisfactory.

However, she said, the participation of women in science education has improved significantly in recent years due to our concerted efforts.

She mentioned that in public universities of Bangladesh, about 40% of total students are female, while in private universities, their percentage is 30.

“We make sure that women get preference in the research and innovation grants we offer. Our young girls need to be prepared to realise our vision of a ‘Smart Bangladesh’,” she added,

Prime Minister Hasina vowed to always remain devoted to women's and girls’ education in science and technology.

According to the United Nations a significant gender gap has persisted throughout the years at all levels of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines all over the world.

Even though women have made tremendous progress towards increasing their participation in higher education, they are still under-represented in these fields.

It said that gender equality has always been a core issue for the United Nations. Gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls will make a crucial contribution not only to economic development of the world, but to progress across all the goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well.

On March 14, 2011, the Commission on the Status of Women adopted a report at its fifty-fifth session, with agreed conclusions on access and participation of women and girls in education, training and science and technology, and for the promotion of women’s equal access to full employment and decent work.

On December 20, 2013, the General Assembly adopted a resolution on science, technology and innovation for development, in which it recognised that full and equal access to and participation in science, technology and innovation for women and girls of all ages is imperative for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls.

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