News Release

Mind the GaP (Gender and Poverty): A forum on gender mainstreaming in science, technology, and innovation for the economic empowerment of women and girls

The 68th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), with the priority theme, “Accelerating the achievement of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls by addressing poverty and strengthening institutions and financing with a gender perspective,” will focus on reviewing current researches, policies, practices and provide recommendations to address women’s poverty. The Beijing Platform for Action (1995) identified “women and poverty” as the first critical area of concern, recognizing the multidimensional nature of poverty, its structural causes, and women’s overrepresentation among the poor, underscoring that women’s poverty is related to the absence of economic opportunity, access to economic resources, education and support services and low levels of participation in decision-making. Equitable and full participation of women and men in designing macroeconomic and social policies and programs is necessary to achieve sustainable development alongside change in economic structures and political participation.

In 2012, the Human Rights Council included gender equality as a prerequisite for achieving global poverty eradication goals and objectives as one of the guiding principles in eradicating extreme poverty and human rights. Recognized as the most significant global challenge, ending poverty in all forms and dimensions is considered a Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 1 in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. To ensure that no gender is left behind in fighting poverty, gender responsiveness of other SDGs, i.e. SDG 2 (zero hunger), 4 (quality education, and 10 (reduced inequalities) should also be kept in mind. To close the gender gap in poverty, member states committed investments and support to achieve gender equality and women empowerment.

In this age of the Information Revolution and Artificial Intelligence, one of the most prominent tools to eradicate poverty, especially among women and girls, is through Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI). STI has a cross-cutting impact on improving agriculture, healthcare, education, entrepreneurship, and other vital aspects of inclusive development. This will be the central theme of the Philippine Virtual Side Event for the UN 68th CSW, Mind the GaP (Gender and Poverty): A forum on gender mainstreaming in science, technology, and innovation for the economic empowerment of women and girls. In this forum, efforts of member countries to use STI to empower economic participation for women and girls will be discussed. Best practices, challenges, and recommendations for future improvement will be shared on how STI can be a powerful mechanism to eradicate poverty and bridge the gender gap in economic participation.