The second edition of the gender equality summit bridges Indian and global leaders in achieving gender equality goals.
Aiming to highlight issues related to gender equality at workplaces in India, Global Compact Network India – local arm of UN Global Compact, New York organised its second edition of gender equality summit recently in the Capital. The summit was organised in the backdrop of the increasing conversation around the safety of women in workplaces and a need to undertake corrective actions.
This year’s theme- ‘Preparing women for the future of work’ was chosen keeping in sync with the UN sustainable development goals that target creating the most conducive work environment for them. It looked at solutions as to how the Governments, private sector, not-for-profits and communities at large can contribute towards creating an ambience around safe and inclusive workplace for women.
The summit emphasised on the role of women in strengthening the 4th Industrial Revolution.
The summit marked presence of eminent leaders like Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog and Vaishali Sinha. Chair GES 2019 Chief Sustainability, CSR & Communication Officer, Renew Power. Amitabh Kant said “There is a need to strive for gender equality and uneven play between men and women comes at a significant economic cost that weighs very heavily on India’s growth. India’s female labour force participation is very low at 27 per cent compared to 78 per cent of men. This is much lower compared to figures world over.”
On the other hand Kamal Singh, Executive Director, Global Compact Network India expressed his view, “Holistic development of the nation and its societies can only happen if we assign equal value to both genders. For the growth and true success of the nation, gender diversity is imperative and we should strive towards achieving it.
We need to keep in mind that gender equality is not about creating safe and inclusive workplace for women but our homes and society at large too.”
Vaishali Sinha, said “The 2nd UNGCNI Gender Equality Summit is the perfect platform for a discourse on collective responsibility towards gender equality and explore avenues for gender inclusive outcomes. This year’s theme is also highly relevant, as it recognizes the importance of equipping women with the necessary skills such that they emerge as equal, if not primary contributors to an ever evolving workplace. It also provides an excellent opportunity to hear top woman leaders share their learnings and experiences, which can only serve as an inspiration for the current and next generation of women at the workplace.”
Atul Dhawan, Partner, Deloitte India, said “Indian businesses are taking a proactive approach to train their workforces for the future and they have the most clearly defined decision-making process of all executives.
A research paper on Empowering Women in India for the 4th Industrial Revolution was also launched today, in association with Deloitte.
This report shows that the share of women (India) in workforce fell to 25% and the female labour force participation rate (FLPR) is 26%. There are a total of 195 million women who are employed in the unorganized sector or in unpaid word. It is found that the earlier three revolutions caused a great widening of the extent of gender disparities and gender stereotypes.
The emergence of the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) provides an opportunity for invested stakeholders to press the reset button. It will influence work in terms of the nature of organizational realities and leading skill types. Deloitte recommends skill development interventions for women to have a combination of four skill categories – workplace readiness, soft skills, technical expertise and opportunities for entrepreneurship. The Gender Equality Summit endeavors to step up in the same direction.
As a United Nations Global Compact local arm, Global Compact Network India (GCNI) has been acting as a country level platform in providing a robust platform for Indian businesses, academic institutions and civil society organizations to join hands for strengthening responsible business practices. Also as a part of encouraging safer, more inclusive workspaces across various sectors, the Gender Equality Summit has introduced the Best Innovative Practices Awards 2019 “Women at Workplace”. Think through Consulting (TTC) was the Award Process Partner. The proactive need to stir women empowerment across public and private spaces has been in the forefront of this thought process.