Gender equality is a form of balance in diversity. UNICEF says gender equality means that women and men, enjoy the same rights, resources, opportunities, and protections (LeMoyne, 2011)[1]. It does not require that women and men, be the same, or that they be treated exactly alike. One way for women to gain recognition and self-awareness of their potential and worthiness in facing a world filled with gender biased confrontation is by empowering women.

Women in Indonesia still have to face traditional stereotypes that are labeled by their family and environments. To realize gender equality can be done by empowering women. Women empowerment is social action where women can elaborate themselves in any form. Empowerment means agreeing women to make decisions, in this case including participation in political structures and formal decision making, and in the economic, on the ability to earn an income that allows participation in economic decision making (Kabeer, 2005)[2]. Women empowerment is needed, because BPS (Badan Pusat Statistik) Indonesia’s data in 2017 states that there are only 30% female workers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), this percentage can be categorized as low percentage. In 2015, UNESCO stated that the low level of participation of women workers in the industry was due to people’s perceptions that in the dominant industries of male workers, female workers included in the minority, and the assumption that jobs in industry were not attractive to women. In addition, female graduates with degrees in STEM are less likely to work in industry than male graduates (Yasa, Agne, 2018)[3].

Feminine and masculine characters are concreted with body so as to create stereotypes of men as technology makers compared to women as users. The stereotype that men are better than women in the workplace will make women’s productivity limited, women’s narrow thinking. This is often called patriarchal or misogynistic culture, marginalizing women. We are able to foster a new perspective for gender equality in engineering, but it requires considerable effort and human resources to do this. So it takes great women who is able to combatted the gap of trust. Telling women to be more confident in their abilities, don’t just stop with stereotypes of men more capable than women.

Actually, the Indonesian government has done many things to empower women, including strengthening the regulation of women’s rights and regulation of protecting women, even the community also created special organizations for women. Empowerment of women in the workplace can be done from now on, by providing regular socialization to men and women about gender equality, or socialization to women about empowering women as a way to improve the quality of the country’s human resources. One solution in my opinion, women engineers create a forum for ordinary people to offer globally recognized engineering programs at the foundation, undergraduate and postgraduate level, this forum aims to produce knowledgeable and progressive students who will solve stereotypes.

[1] LeMoyne, R. (2011). Promoting Gender Equality: An Equity-based Approach to Programming. Operational Guidance Overview in Brief. UNICEF.

[2] Kabeer, N. (2005). Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Critical Analysis to The Third Millennium Development. Gender and Development, 13–24.

[3] Yasa, Agne. (2018). REVOLUSI INDUSTRI 4.0: Peran Perempuan Disorot. Diambil kembali dari Ekonomi Bisnis: https://ekonomi.bisnis.com/read/20180222/12/742128/revolusi-industri-4.0-peran-perempuan-disorot. [22/11/2019]

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