ty as it relates to sustainability - taken from the UNs Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Also interesting is similar information on sustainability from EarthTrends.
" Making the Case for Women
In defense of a gender perspective: Goals 1-7
Gender equality is not only a goal in its own right, but an essential ingredient for achieving all the MDGs, be it poverty eradication, protecting the environment, or access to healthcare. Attempting to meet the MDGs without incorporating gender equality will both increase the costs and minimize success. Because the MDGs are mutually reinforcing, success in meeting the goals will have positive impacts on gender equality, just as progress toward gender equality in any one area will help to further each of the other goals.
Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger.
It is now generally recognized that the majority of the world’s poor are women. Goal 1 reflects this by broadening the definition of poverty to encompass not only income poverty but other dimensions such as lack of empowerment, opportunity, capacity and security. Because many aspects of gender inequality influence the different dimensions of poverty, promoting gender equality in the design of strategies and actions to meet this goal is critical. Gender equality has a direct impact on economic growth and the reduction of income poverty by raising productivity improving efficiency, increasing economic opportunities and empowering women.
Goal 2: Achieve universal primary education.
Of the 150 million children aged 6-11 who don’t attend school, over 90 million are girls. Meeting the education goal therefore requires that the distinctive conditions preventing girls or boys from attending or completing primary school be addressed. Reducing education costs, improving quality, tackling parental concerns about female modesty or safety and increasing the returns to families that invest in female schooling are factors that can overcome social and economic barriers to girls’ education. Goal 2 is key to achieving Goal 1; eliminating gender disparities in education is one of the most effective poverty reduction strategies.
Goal 3: Promote gender equality and women’s empowerment.
Of the world's 876 million illiterate people over 15 years two-thirds are women; working women have less social protection and employment rights; a third of all women has been violently abused; over 500,000 women die each year in pregnancy and childbirth; and rates of HIV/AIDS infection among women are rapidly increasing. The proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments is also included making this goal important in its own right and to all the other MDG goals.
Art Pitcher said:Susan,
I think there is still a pervading mindset throughout this country and most of the world that women are simply worth less. I used to think it was just because they have been conditioned throughout time not to be assertive (for example, in asking for raises or negotiating).
However, I think the issue is actually much deeper. What I am going to say next is purely my opinion, but having a 12 year old daughter and getting to know her friends has allowed me to make a couple of observations.
I think society encourages young women to have a very temporary attitude about their careers because, after all, they're going to go get married and have babies. So why build your way up the career ladder if you're only going to abandon it when the right guy comes along?
This is not my viewpoint, but I am making an observation about the messages that are sent to young women, and that - I believe - is very telling about how much our society perceives the role of women.
In other words, as a hiring manager (general statement disclaimer, I mean a hiring manager OTHER than me), perhaps I am interviewing and in the back of my mind I'm seeing maternity leave, and maybe some time off after that, and maybe not coming back at all, after I've made an investment of both money and resources in this person. Whereas in my next interview, I'm wondering how much liquor this guy could hold before he passes out.
I'm just saying. We're better as a culture in that this gender bias appears to have become more COVERT rather than OVERT..... but we still have a long way to go before the GENERAL valuation of the work produced by women is perceived as equal. And then there is the whole PC movement and the feminization of male characteristics in an effort to appear empathetic, and the list goes on.
In some ways our society appears to have done a fairly good job trying to create an equilibrium, but then I see soccer teams that are "participation" based, where there are no winners and losers - or where EVERYONE'S a winner.
That's not preparing our children effectively for the workplace, in my opinion.
Sorry about the tangent.
Susan Burns said:Good question Art. I've seen 3 trends - (1) reflective of men continuing to focus on being the primary family wage earner, to a larger degree than women; (2) prestige of the "school" within which the major sits at the university - arts/sciences rather than business so less men are attracted to the major; and, (3) perception of the "industry" as not "masculine" - obviously, self fulfilling prophecy.There are many similarities between retail and PR. In fact, starting wages in retail are significantly higher than PR and development programs are move evolved. I was very surprised to find a mindset within PR that continued to believe that PR college interns should work for free "because its a privilege" and that graduating seniors were being offered internships. Both of these are also big turnoffs to men and ethnic minorities, as well as top-tier students in general. All of which shows up in the senior ranks over time.What do you think?Art Pitcher said: