The role International Day of Women and Girls in Science in strengthening Sustainable Development Goals

By Racheal Ngumi

This Day is an opportunity to promote full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls. This year, the International Day of Women and Girls in Science (IDWGIS) will focus on the role of Women and Girls in Science as relates to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Particular focus is on SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation), SDG 7 (affordable and clean energy), SDG 9 (industry, innovation, and infrastructure), SDG 11 (sustainable cities and communities) and SDG17 (means of implementation). In effect, how the contribution of women and girls in these areas will affect sustainable development in their respective countries.

The IDWGIS aims to connect the International Community to Women and Girls in Science, strengthening the ties between science, policy, and society for strategies oriented towards the future. The IDWGIS will enable demonstration and illustration of best practices, strategies, applied solutions in addressing SDGs challenges and opportunities.

Some of these best practices extend to aspects of gender equality which has been a core concept to enhance empowerment of women and girls that will enable economic development and growth. Bridging gender gaps to enhance accessibility to innovation and technology will enhance women and girls participation and decision making on themes at all levels of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines all over the world. This will ensure that steps are made towards increasing their participation in higher education, while still being represented in these fields.

Diversity encourages sustainable development which in turn expands the research pool of talented researchers, bringing in fresh perspectives, talent and creativity. Women and girls participating in these programs encourages new ideas and gives solutions to problems in the community and the society. This Day is a reminder that women and girls play a critical role in science and technology communities and that their participation should be strengthened.

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