Global Gender Gap Index

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Context: India has ranked 112th among 153 countries in the annual Global Gender Gap Index for 2020.

Relevance:
Prelims: Current events of national and international importance.
Mains: GS I-

  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India. Role of women and women's organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems, and their remedies. Effects of globalization on Indian society Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.

About the Global Gender Gap Index :

  • The report is annually published by the World Economic Forum (WEF).
  • The report aims to serve “as a compass to track progress on relative gaps between women and men on health, education, economy and politics”.
  • The Index aims to serve as a compass to track progress on relative gaps between women and men on health, education, economy, and politics. Through this annual yardstick, the stakeholders within each country are able to set priorities relevant in each specific economic, political and cultural context.
  • Dimensions:
    • The Global Gender Gap Index benchmarks 153 countries on their progress towards gender parity in four dimensions:
      • Economic Participation and Opportunity,
      • Educational Attainment,
      • Health and Survival and
      • Political Empowerment
  • Score:
    • Over the Index, the highest possible score is 1 (equality) and the lowest possible score is 0 (inequality).

World Economic Forum:

  • The World Economic Forum is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation.
  • It was established in 1971 as a not-for-profit foundation and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. It is independent, impartial and not tied to any special interests.
  • The Forum strives in all its efforts to demonstrate entrepreneurship in the global public interest while upholding the highest standards of governance.

 

Key Findings:

  • Globally, the average (population-weighted) distance completed to gender parity is at 68.6%, which is an improvement since the last edition. It will take 99.5 years to achieve full parity between men and women at the current rate of change.
  • The largest gender disparity is in political empowerment.
  • Only 25% of the 35,127 seats in parliaments around the world are occupied by women, and only 21% of the 3,343 ministers are women.
  • Iceland has been the frontrunner on the Global Gender Gap Index for 11 years in a row. It has closed almost 88% of its gender gap, followed by Nordic neighbors Norway, Finland and Sweden.
  • Yemen is ranked the worst (153rd), while Iraq is 152nd and Pakistan 151st.

 

India- Specific Findings:

  • India has slipped to the 112th spot from its 108th position in the last edition. India was ranked relatively higher at 98th place in the 2006 Report.
    • India has been ranked below countries like China (106th), Sri Lanka (102nd), Nepal (101st), Brazil (92nd), Indonesia (85th) and Bangladesh (50th).

  • Performance on Four Indicators:
    • India has improved to 18th place on political empowerment but it has slipped to 150th on health and survival, to 149th in terms of economic participation and opportunity and to 112th place for educational attainment.
  • Economic:
    • Among the 153 countries studied, India is the only country where the economic gender gap (0.354) is larger than the political gender gap (0.411).
    • India is among the countries with very low women representation on company boards (13.8%), while it was even worse in China (9.7%).

  • On health and survival:
    • Four large countries — Pakistan, India, Vietnam and China — fare badly with millions of women there not getting the same access to health as men.

India’s performance has deteriorated:

  • India has slipped four places on the index to 112, behind neighbours.
  • India’s latest position is 14 notches lower than its reading in 2006 when the WEF started measuring the gender gap.
  • It also ranked lower than many of its international peers, and some of its neighbours like China (106th), Sri Lanka (102nd), Nepal (101st), Brazil (92nd), Indonesia (85th) and Bangladesh (50th).
  • India is now ranked in the bottom-five in terms of women’s health and survival and economic participation.

Positive notes for India:

  • On a positive note, India has closed two-thirds of its overall gender gap, but the condition of women in large sections of India’s society is precarious and the economic gender gap has significantly widened since 2006.
  • India is the only country among the 153 countries studied where the economic gender gap is larger than the political one.
  • India ranks high on the political empowerment sub-index, largely because the country was headed by a woman for 20 of the past 50 years.
  • But, female political representation today is low as women make up only 14.4 % of Parliament (122nd rank globally) and 23 % of the cabinet (69th).



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