Focus Writing on Women in Technology: A Prerequisite for Smart Bangladesh

In the pursuit of a Smart Bangladesh, the empowerment and inclusion of women in the field of technology play a crucial role. Technologically empowered women can contribute significantly to the nation’s well-being by providing quality education, self-care, healthcare, social protection, and more [1]. However, Bangladesh still faces challenges in bridging the gender gap in technology. This focus writing aims to highlight the importance of women in technology and the steps needed to create a more inclusive and equitable digital landscape in Bangladesh.

The Digital Gender Divide:

  1. The digital gender divide is a global issue, and Bangladesh is no exception. Women’s participation in technology is significantly lower than men worldwide, with women using the internet 12% less than men [2].
  2. In Bangladesh, the gender gap in mobile internet usage is significant, with 36% of men compared to only 19% of women using the internet [2].
  3. Women’s representation in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields is low, with only 8% of girls enrolling in science departments and 1.5% in engineering and technology in 2019 [2].
  4. Social barriers and norms, including gender stereotypes, prevent women from entering STEM and ICT sectors [2].

Challenges Faced by Women in Technology:

  1. Limited access to digital literacy and resources, particularly in rural areas, where only 4% of women have ever used a computer compared to 13% in cities [2].
  2. Lack of awareness and mentorship opportunities for women interested in technology careers.
  3. Cyberviolence against women and girls, which hinders their participation in the digital space [2].
  4. Gender pay gap and discrimination in the tech workforce, discouraging women from pursuing careers in technology [3].

Strides and Initiatives:

  1. The Digital Innovation Challenge for Women, launched by The World Bank, Women in Digital, and UNDP, aims to encourage girls from rural areas to participate in technology-related initiatives [2].
  2. The World Bank supports initiatives such as WePower, Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (WEFI), Private Investment and Digital Entrepreneurship (PRIDE), and Accelerating and Strengthening Skills for Economic Transformation (ASSET) to empower women in technology and provide them with training and opportunities [2].
  3. Efforts to raise awareness, challenge gender stereotypes, and promote women role models in technology fields [2].
  4. Increasing access to digital education and resources for women, enabling them to compete in the digital economy [3].

The inclusion and empowerment of women in technology are essential for the realization of a Smart Bangladesh. By addressing the digital gender divide, providing access to digital literacy, promoting mentorship opportunities, and challenging societal barriers, Bangladesh can harness the potential of women in technology to drive innovation, economic growth, and social development. Creating a more equitable and inclusive digital landscape will not only benefit women but also contribute to the overall progress of the nation.


  1. Women in Technology: A Prerequisite for Smart Bangladesh
  2. Bangladesh’s women rise to the challenge with big ideas for digital innovation
  3. Bangladeshi Women in Tech and Digital Education: Challenges and Strides | The Daily Star

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