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The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the global political, economic, and sociocultural landscape, leading to a mountain of uncertainties. Its sudden outbreak, and the implementation of health and safety measures, inflicted a serious blow on state economies, industries, and workers. More importantly, it has damaged efforts for gender equality around the world. Globally, 4.5 percent of “women’s employment” are at risk, compared to the 3.8 percent for men (Madgavkar et al. 2020). Women also take on “an average of 75 percent of the global total unpaid care work” (Madgavkar et al. 2020). Because of such glaring statistics, it is imperative for governments to strive to achieve gender diversity even while responding to the crisis.
“Gender diversity” refers to the equitable or nondiscriminatory representation of people of different genders. This definition includes both having an equal ratio of men and women, and the inclusion of non-binary individuals (Sytsma 2006). Gender equality and diversity have  been proven to “stimulate economic growth,” especially in nations with “higher unemployment rates” and “less economic opportunity” (Domingo 2020). Diversity also “fuels innovation” because it “provides workplaces with diverse values, ways of thinking, interests, and experience[s] (Iwata 2017). Moreover, the fact that “women represent half the global talent pool” should mean a bigger role for them in solving “complex business challenges” (Diversity Task Force 2014, 11). Countries will not experience much development until women are given equal access to all economic, political, and social opportunities.


Mary Ysabelle Samantha A. Chikiamco (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) graduated Cum Laude from Miriam College in 2021 with a Bachelor’s Degree in International Studies. She is currently a Project Associate at the Miriam College - Women and Gender Institute (WAGI) and an incoming law student. Her research interests include Japanese studies, gender, and law.

Article Information

Type of Manuscript: Essay
Volume, Issue, Year: Volume 58, Issue 1, Year 2022
Pages: 140–156

Back to Asian Studies 58 (1): 2022