Science and gender equality are both vital for the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Over the past 15 years, the global community has made a lot of effort in inspiring and engaging women and girls in science. Unfortunately, women and girls continued to be excluded from participating fully in science. According to a study conducted in 14 countries, the probability for female students of graduating with a Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree and Doctor’s degree in science-related field are 18%, 8% and 2% respectively, while the percentages of male students are 37%, 18% and 6%.
In order to achieve full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls, and further achieve gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, the United Nations General Assembly adopted A/70/474/Add.2 declaring 11 February as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science.
Commemorating the very first observance of the day, a High-Level Forum will be held on 11 February 2016 at the United Nations Headquarters by The Royal Academy of Science International Trust (RASIT) and DESA-DSPD.