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News | Gender equality takes center stage

Bosch talks about gender equality at a UN conference

Although women make up half of the world’s population, in many countries they are still denied equal access to education and qualified jobs. According to a United Nations study, women in most of the 67 countries examined occupy less than a third of management positions. What is more, they spend about three times more time on unpaid household labor than men. On the basis of Sustainable Development Goal number 5, the UN has shown that it is committed to gender equality and strengthening women’s rights. 

From January 10 to 12, representatives from politics, business, and civil society discussed the issue of gender equality at the annual conference of the United Nations Academic Council in Vienna. Bosch was among the private sector participants.

Successful women are making progress

In her keynote speech, Amina J. Mohammed, the deputy Secretary General of the United Nations, spoke of the importance of equal opportunity: “A lack of opportunity affects us all – both men and women. We must thus work together to eliminate inequality and achieve a fairer, more peaceful, and more sustainable world for everyone”. Christine Muttonen, the former president of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s (OSCE) Parliamentary Assembly, encouraged women to fight for their rights on the political stage. Women are in the best position to say what they need and make sure that these needs are met.

Angelika Kiessling, Head of corporate communications at Bosch Austria

Angelika Kiessling, the head of corporate communications at Bosch Austria, took part in a panel discussion, where she talked about her own career path: “To have a successful career, women must seize opportunities and clearly say what they want. Excellent performance is also decisive.” Kiessling also emphasized the importance of respect and empathy in communication – especially in times like these where companies like Bosch are undergoing major change. The focus needs to be on collaboration across disciplines and hierarchies. “An open and continuous communication across all levels is one of the major success factors for companies - especially in times of digitalization and Social Media”, Kiessling says.

Diversity is an asset

Bosch promotes a culture of diversity and appreciation, regardless of a person’s sex. Among other things, the company aims to increase its share of women in management positions to 20 percent by 2020, up from the current figure of 15.4 percent. Bosch is committed to equal pay and offers special mentoring programs for women. Moreover, the company promotes a flexible and family-friendly working culture that emphasizes results rather than workplace presence.

More information on this year’s conference of the United Nations Academic Council can be found here.

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