Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
According to President of the Vietnam Women’s Union, Ha Thi Nga, females make up 50.2% of Vietnam’s population, and 71.24% of female labourers participate in the labour force, higher than the global average.
The female workforce has significantly contributed to the country’s development, in which female intellectuals play a particularly important role. As female intellectuals account for 42% of the total number of the country’s intellectuals, they play an indispensable role across all aspects of social life. Many of them have high academic titles as evidenced by the fact that women account for 3.2% and 17.5% of the total number of professors and associate professors in Vietnam, respectively.
It can be clearly seen that women and female intellectuals in particular are valuable and important in contributing to national construction and development thanks to their talent, intelligence, and willpower. They are proven to have gained significant achievements in scientific research and also having played an important role in state management activities.
Furthermore, female intellectuals have constantly acquired knowledge and applied their experience in most economic sectors, making remarkable contributions to national economic growth, creating jobs for workers, and ensuring social security.
However, the facts have shown that female intellectuals still face certain challenges and inequalities in both participating in and enjoying the fruit of the society’s development. Female intellectuals have not yet been arranged in proper working positions and have not yet received favourable treatment as compared to their level of contribution.
In addition, there has not been a clear legal and policy framework on the role and position of female intellectuals in sustainable development. The training of a high-quality female workforce has not created a favourable environment to promote women’s creativity.
Many Vietnamese women today still face many challenges due to gender stereotypes, making it difficult for them to strike a balance between work and family. Many of them do not receive the sharing and support of family members, creating an “invisible” burden on their shoulders. Therefore, they seem to be “overloaded” and suffer from a lack of time for themselves to relax, improve their knowledge, update themselves on the latest information, and this weakens their will to pursue their career goals.
Article 4 of the 2006 Law on Gender Equality emphasises that gender equality goal is aimed at eliminating gender discrimination, creating equal opportunities for men and women in socio-economic and human resource development. Therefore, the effective development of human resources targets the achievement of substantial gender equality and the establishment and consolidation of cooperative and supportive relationships between men and women across all areas of society and family life.
In order to build a high-quality female workforce, the Party, State, ministries, sectors and localities need to continue paying attention to supplementing and completing policies and laws on women’s roles and positions in society, with a focus on reforming policy on training female intellectuals, increasing their working capacity and promoting their creativity.
It is important to effectively implement the education and training policy, prioritising on developing high-quality female labour force, supporting talented female students and scientists so that they can further uphold their potentials and internal strengths. Developing female intellectuals among ethnic minority groups so that they can participate directly in the local socio-economic development.
There is also must to raise awareness among the public, leaders at all levels, and male intellectuals about the role and position of women in general and female intellectuals in particular in sustainable development. Most importantly, every woman herself, regardless of social and professional background, needs to improve her qualifications and skills, and acquire knowledge to be adaptive to the development of society.