In a 2020 article, The Guardian presented a thought-provoking question about the eco gender gap: Why is saving the planet seen as women’s work?
The piece discusses the prevalence of products aimed at helping consumers address climate change, noting that many of these products are marketed towards women. The article points out that women are not only powerful consumers but also often responsible for domestic tasks, including those related to sustainability. This gendered marketing approach risks reinforcing the idea that sustainability is solely a women’s issue, which is harmful and ineffective for addressing the climate crisis.
The piece highlights the need for a more inclusive approach that doesn’t place the burden of environmental care solely on women, alienating men from the cause. In light of the urgency of addressing climate change, a collaborative and inclusive approach is essential.
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What businesses should do about eco gender gap
Given the understanding of the eco gender gap, how can players in the Southeast Asian tech startup ecosystem address this issue?
Two approaches are presented:
– Go with the flow
– Swim against the current
Going with the flow means working within the existing situation, focusing on developing and promoting products that cater to women as primary customers for sustainable solutions. On the other hand, swimming against the current involves actively addressing and changing the root of the gender gap issue, encouraging more inclusive participation from men and women in environmental sustainability efforts.
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Both approaches have their merits, but the urgency of addressing climate change may necessitate focusing on achieving results in the most efficient way possible.
Image Credit: RunwayML
The article was first published on October 4, 2023.
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