A report released by the United Nations International Labour Organisation shows that by allowing 25% more women into the workforce by 2025, the economy could benefit by as much as $5.8 trillion.
In addition, the report, World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends For Women 2017, showed that by reducing the gender gap within the workplace, the global tax revenue could potentially increase by up to $1.5 billion.
The topic of women in the working environment sparks many debates and raises many issues within our society, with policy makers, social expectations - and in some countries, segregation laws - being root causes. But with all the other advancements in our current climate (and such a potential economic incentive) why is the idea of women working equally alongside men such a big deal?
According to a second report - from the European Commission - the biggest factors for an unbalanced workplace are differences in roles in the home, differences in capital investment, plus assumed biological advances (i.e. separating men's roles from those of women's), as well as prejudices and stereotypes within society. Such factors make me think of situations where women have proven their capabilities time and time again. Looking back at history it does make me wonder, why does the world have to be at war for women to be trusted with the roles socially 'expected' of men?
If more women had a role within the workforce, economic benefits are just the beginning. The UN's report indicates that the overall welfare of women and their families would benefit sufficiently in addition. As for the answer to the problem? The report says that “closing gender gaps will require concerted efforts across a range of policy dimensions.”
All it takes to tackle the organisational and financial interests that revolve around the gender gap within the workplace is money. Sadly, it takes a significant amount more to tackle people's sexism and other cultural prejudices.