31st World Economic Forum in Davos was closed on Friday. This year’s meeting will be remembered by the participation of the American president, for the first time in twenty years. And, more importantly, by the fact that for the first time in history the forum was co-chaired by seven women.
Paradoxically, the WEF’s annual gender gap report shows that, after the years of progress, fight for gender equality is stagnating. Men’s dominance in IT and biotech sectors is reversing trend towards equality. We need to be especially worried with the fact that 57% of the jobs set to be displaced by AI technology and robots between now and 2026 belong to women. According to Saadia Zahidi, we are looking at a worsening of inequality, not only in IT sector but across all sectors as well.
The WEF’s annual gender gap report calculated that the gulf between male and female opportunity had widened for the first time since 2006. Sharan Burrow, one of the seven co-chairs, pointed out that global economic model has failed women. “In the world of work, using any set of indicators, progress for women has stagnated. This has been driven by corporate greed and profit, more than anything.”

Despite the signs of stagnation, Zahidi is optimistic when it comes to a position of women. She pointed out that among the younger people attending Davos, the so-called global leaders and global shapers, 54% are women, also the significant progress for here is the influence of the “#MeToo” and “TimesUp!” movements on a public awareness. “There is now positive momentum and we need to make sure material change is achieved.” said Zahidi. Burrow followed up with the statement: “We have the power in our hands to really change. The question is, do we have the courage?”

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