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Women Receive Increasing Support in Science Careers

Hungary Today 2023.12.20.

Hungary should become one of the world’s top twenty-five and Europe’s top ten innovators by 2030, based on the government’s targets, but to achieve this it is essential that more people choose careers in engineering, science, mathematics, or IT, and that more of them are women. However, gender stereotypes still exist in the sector and must be broken down if the vision is to succeed, reports Világgazdaság.

Back at the beginning of spring, when analyzing higher education admissions, Minister of Culture János Csák noted that the share of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) and STEM+ with agricultural, medical, pedagogical, and governmental sciences in the applications has picked up.

One in two of the higher education students should study in the STEM area, and we will increase the proportion of women in higher education, which is currently 25%,”

said Balázs Hankó, speaking at the closing event of the Women in Technology national career guidance program.


Launched last October with the support of Huawei, the aim of the Women in Technology education program was to break down stereotypes about engineering and make IT and engineering careers more attractive to women.

The event also highlighted that although women are half of the users of digital tools, they are hardly involved in their development.

In Hungary, only one in ten IT professionals are women, while there are many positions that offer excellent opportunities for women.

Photo via Pexels

This was echoed later by László Bódis, Deputy State Secretary for Innovation, who said: “We are in the middle of the European patenting field and to come close to the OECD average in general, the current number of 2,700 PhD students should be increased to 3,400, and the share of the STEM field from 30% to 42%.

Furthermore, the problems are not just in the numbers, but also in the entrenched habits and perceptions of women.

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CETIN Hungary‘s representative poll of 1,258 people found that gender stereotypes are still strong today, putting women at a disadvantage in science jobs. This is why opinions differ on the extent to which men and women expect the following when entering STEM careers:

  • High salary: 59-51%
  • Internationally useful knowledge: 52-46%
  • Interesting work: 34-27%

The paper pointed out that “women prefer working in the STEM sector because of the possibility of home office and flexibility” (48%), as it is considered a family-friendly option, making it more compatible with childbearing plans.

There was noticeably less enthusiasm for the fact that women in STEM professions can have the same career path as men (40%) and that they can earn the same amount of money (34%).

There is also a gender gap in how men perceive female colleagues. 39% of women said they were not accepted as equals, but only 27% of male respondents agreed. A third of respondents conclude that women find it harder to succeed among men, and harder to move up the career ladder, which is why fewer women choose STEM professions.

Earlier this year, Microsoft teamed up with the Women4Cyber Foundation for an education program, and CETIN’s partnered with the Association of Hungarian Women in Science, whose project is about breaking down gender stereotypes and neutralizing their impact on career choices.

CETIN’s STEMpowered project aims to encourage the development of women’s careers in engineering and technology, which is not only important for equal opportunities, but is also expected to contribute to a more balanced functioning, thus bringing economic benefits.

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Via Világgazdaság, Featured image via Pexels

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