International Day of Women and Girls in Science: We need frameworks, not patchworks, to plug the leaky pipeline

By Dr Maryse Lassonde, Scientific Director of Les Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies (FRQNT) and President of the Royal Society of Canada

On 11 February, the world will be celebrating International Day of Women and Girls in Science. There will be lots of articles and speeches about the famous “leaky pipeline”, a metaphor used to describe the constant flow of women leaving the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) throughout their studies and careers.

Let’s be honest – you cannot “plug the leaks” with policy fixes. In Quebec and Canada, we have an impressive array of policies and projects to promote gender equality that span across almost every ministry. Yet the data show that there has been little, if any, progress in the number of women pursuing STEM over the past 20 to 30 years. Continue reading

Aligning key initiatives in monitoring learning

Published on Norrag on 24 October

By Luis Crouch, Chief Technical Officer of the International Development Group, RTI, and Silvia Montoya, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, UIS

 

In a recent blog, we noted that there is currently a global multiplicity of strong initiatives in generating better data on learning outcomes, oriented at Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4). And, that’s only in the area of learning outcomes. If one adds other key aspects of SDG 4 and the global and thematic indicators, the number of initiatives is almost too large to catalogue. Even within the limited area of learning outcomes, some of the elements in the various initiatives create synergies, but others might create duplication or at least different proposed ways of doing things, if there is not a forum to clear lessons-learned and the results of different approaches. In our recent blog, we promised to present a systematic analysis that, using a matrix format, compares elements of the various initiatives. This, we hope, would be of use to the institutions involved and the funders asked to underwrite the various proposals. Continue reading

We need more than numbers: Launch of SDG Monitoring – UIS Data Blog

Silvia Montoya, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, @montoya_sil

The success or failure of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will depend, very largely, on sound statistics. It is obvious that we’ll need quality data to track progress towards the goals from their launch in 2015 to their 2030 deadline. But we’ll also need it throughout the journey to tell us whether we’re going the right way or need to change direction. We’ll need comparable data to show policymakers what is working (and what is not), to keep them motivated and, whenever necessary, to hold them to account. Continue reading