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La falta de mujeres en los campos de la ciencia, tecnología, ingeniería y matemáticas (CTIM) = Problemas en el sector privado

Las Matemáticas y la Ciencia son solo para los Hombres

Las mujeres no son lo suficientemente inteligentes para ser ingenieras ni tampoco buenas para las matemáticas. ¿No es por esto que los hombres han obtenido el 70% de los grados doctorales en matemáticas y que el mundo se regocijo recientemente que una mujer, Maryam Mirzakhani, ganara el premio nobel de matemáticas por primera vez?

En Latinoamérica y el Caribe (LAC), hay un mayor número de mujeres inscritas en educación terciara que hombres. El Banco Mundial y otras organizaciones han documentado esto claramente. Por otra parte, los datos sobre las mujeres trabajando en los campos de la ciencia, tecnología, ingeniería y matemática son escasos. Sin embargo, un estudio reciente del BID encontró que solo un 36 por ciento de graduados en el área de CTIM, o STEM por su sigla en inglés, son mujeres. Esto quiere decir que aproximadamente 11 por ciento  de todos los grados superiores obtenidos por mujeres en LAC son en campos de CTIM.

Esta disparidad educativa tiene implicaciones en la fuerza laboral, especialmente en el sector privado.

En Estados Unidos, la Casa Blanca reportó que las mujeres que trabajan en las áreas de CTIM ganan un 33 por ciento más que las mujeres en otras áreas. También estimaron que la brecha salarial es más pequeña en los campos de CTIM que en otros campos. Sin embargo, aunque un número pequeño de mujeres deciden seguir una carrera de educación superior en CTIM, un número aún menor de mujeres se gradúa y trabaja en estos campos.

¿Porque huyen las mujeres?

Hay varios factores que explican porque las mujeres se han mantenido alejadas de estos campos. Primero, las mujeres están socializadas para pensar que los temas y carreras profesionales relacionados con CTIM (ingeniería, energía renovable) son para los hombres. Estos estereotipos son difíciles de romper.

Segundo, un reporte del 2012 encontró que 38 por ciento de las mujeres que trabajan en ingeniería en los Estados Unidos optan por dejar la industria debido a condiciones hostiles en la cultura laboral, falta de flexibilidad y pocas oportunidades para desarrollarse profesionalmente. Los investigadores se sorprendieron con lo poco que las mujeres mencionaron razones familiares, rompiendo el mito que estas son unas de las razones más fuertes por las cuales las mujeres dejan la fuerza laboral.

La Participación de las Mujeres en CTIM Beneficia a los Negocios 

Crecientes investigaciones han concluido que la diversidad, entre otras cosas género, es esencial para la productividad[1], competitividad e innovación de las compañías así como la inversión en las mujeres es crítica para la reducción de la pobreza. Las mujeres influencian hasta un 80 por ciento de los gastos mundiales.

Las mujeres toman las decisiones financieras para:

women in stem chart

Dado esto, es importante que las mujeres tengan participación en cómo se desarrollan los productos y servicios y que las compañías respondan a este segmento del mercado. De acuerdo con un estudio de Deloitte, las compañías con equipos de liderazgo diversos que incluyen a un porcentaje significativo de mujeres son más innovadoras y generan retornos financieros mayores.

women in stem diagram

La diversidad conlleva a la innovación y la innovación es esencial para el crecimiento. Un estudio del BID encontró datos empíricos demostrando que los países con una proporción mayor de graduados ingenieros tenían la tendencia de crecer en un ratio más acelerado, que otros países con una proporción mayor de estudiantes siguiendo otras disciplinas. Por lo tanto es vital incrementar el número de estudiantes en CTIM atrayendo a las mujeres a estos campos.

¿Qué se Puede Hacer?

Los casos de estudio en negocios y desarrollo demuestran claramente que LAC debe invertir en el crecimiento económico de CTIM y que el sector privado juega un papel importante en este sentido. Podemos:

  • Resaltar la importancia de CTIM en las instituciones de educación superior y trabajar con la educación básica y secundaria para crear un flujo de mujeres jóvenes motivadas con acceso a opciones innovadoras de financiación.
  • Involucrar a las compañías en campos relacionados con energía renovable y  telecomunicaciones, entre otros, para que estos sectores y carreras sean más atractivas para las mujeres jóvenes y diversos estudiantes.
  • Trabajar con el liderazgo corporativo para asegurar que las compañías sean más inclusivas y respondan a la mano de obra diversa adoptando una cultura de trabajo equitativa, mejores estrategias de reclutamiento y retención, desarrollo de talento y flexibilidad laboral.

Debemos romper los estereotipos que hay hacia las mujeres y mostrarle a los negocios y educadores en LAC que la equidad de género en CTIM no solo es lo correcto pero es el camino más sabio.

¿Cuáles son tus ideas para mejorar la equidad de género en CTIM en LAC?

Esta columna fue originalmente publicada en el Blog Negocios sostenibles del Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo (BID)

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