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A new code of best practices encourages the involvement of women in the ICT sector

The ICT sector is a key contributor to EU growth. It contributes 5.3% of EU´s GDP and 4% of its jobs. It also accounts for 20% of economy-wide labour productivity growth. The ICT sector achieves above-average growth and is the EU´s most innovative and research-intensive sector, accounting for 25% of the total EU research effort in the business sector.

Less and less young people, particularly women, take up Information and Comunication Tecnologies (ICT) because they find it difficult to bear with unconvenience of a very competitive sector. This particular field demands a great number of well-skilled employees to remain efficient. It is expected that there will be a shortage of 300,000 qualified staff in this sector by 2013. One way to reverse this negative trend is to encourage young people, particularly women, to take up an ICT-related career.

The Code of Best Practices for Women in ICT seeks to be a rallying point for stakeholders wishing to support and promote the greater participation of women in the sector. The Code aims not only to ensure that more women choose careers in the sector but also that they are encouraged and supported to remain and progress in their chosen area of work. This code will be subject to national and international practices.

At university level the code demands that, it is important to encourage young female university students who haveopted for ICT-related studies to continue in their chosen field. The main aims here are to continue to militate against stereotypes and to present attractive career opportunities in the sector.

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