The United Nations(UN)’s International Women’s Day(IWD) is annually observed across the globe on 8th March to recognise the achievements of women regardless of their national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political differences.
The theme of IWD 2023 is “DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality”.
- This theme is aligned with the priority theme for the upcoming 67th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW-67) – “Innovation and technological change, and education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls”.
i.During International Women’s Year – 1975, the United Nations began celebrating 8 March as International Women’s Day.
ii.In December 1977, The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a resolution and proclaimed the 8th March of every year as United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.
- The UN officially recognised International Women’s Day for the first time on 8th March 1977.
i.The celebration of Women’s Day on 8th March is associated with the women’s movement during the 1917 Russian Revolution.
ii.By 1917 a vast number of women were working in factories, both in munitions and replacing conscripted men. They chose to protest and strike under the slogan “Bread and Peace” on the last Sunday in February in the Julian calendar (which fell on March 8 on the Gregorian calendar).
- Before the 1917 Russian Revolution, Russia had not yet adopted the Gregorian calendar, introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582 to mitigate the errors of the Julian calendar.
- The Gregorian calendar was implemented in Russia on 14 February 1918.
The UN has organised an event to offer a platform to highlight the role of all digital fields in improving access to digital tools. The event is followed by a high-level panel discussion and musical performances.
Significance of IWD 2023:
i.IWD 2023 recognizes and celebrates the women and girls who are championing the advancement of transformative technology and digital education.
ii.IWD 2023 will explore the impact of the digital gender gap on widening economic and social inequalities.
iii.According to the UN Women’s Gender Snapshot 2022 report, the exclusion of women from the digital world has cut off USD 1 trillion from the gross domestic product(GDP) of low- and middle-income countries in the last decade. Without any action to address this, the loss will grow to USD 1.5 trillion by 2025.
iv.A study of 51 countries revealed 38% of women had personally experienced online violence and a survey of women journalists from 125 countries found that 73% had suffered online violence in the course of their work.
Observance of IWD in India:
The National Gallery of Modern Art(NGMA) is celebrating International Women’s Day with week-long celebrations from 7th to 12th March 2023.
- The celebrations initiated today with an exhibition titled- “ समत्वं योग उच्यते: Celebrating the art of photography” which showcased the artistic journey of more than 60 contemporary women photographers.