From birth, girls in Asia face significant obstacles to fulfilling their human potential – especially their potential for leadership, write Vishakha N Desai and Astrid S Tuminez for Project-Syndicate
Everyone’s eyes on are Asia’s rise. China, once dismissed as poor and backward, is now the world’s second-largest economy. India, with its huge population, scientific prowess, and entrepreneurial vitality, is another powerful engine of Asian growth. Add to this Japan and South Korea’s formidable economies, and Southeast Asia’s dynamism, and a picture emerges of rising wealth, confidence, and leadership.
Yet few women in Asia make it to the top. Social norms undervalue girls and women, with sex-selection abortions resulting in an estimated 1.3 million girls per year not being born in China and India alone. more