When is 2023 International Women’s Day celebrated in the United States?
The annual celebration of women began more than a century ago, but was only officially marked by the UN in 1975.
International Women’s Day is an annual celebration of social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women around the world.
The global celebration takes place on 8 March every year, reportedly to commemorate a protest by women garment workers in New York. The meaning behind the date has also been linked back to a workers’ celebration in the USSR, but no one knows for sure exactly why that date was first chosen.
Either way, this year’s International Women’s Day will take place on Wednesday, 8 March 2023.
What are the origins of International Women’s Day?
The celebration undoubtedly has some links to a women’s rights movements in socialist Russia, before later becoming a unified day to mark the achievement of women more broadly.
In the US the first National Women’s Day was celebrated on 28 February 1909, although this tradition only lasted for five editions. At around the same time a similar movement was gaining traction in Russia with an annual celebration of women’s achievement. This gained pace and in 1917 Russian women held a strike for ‘Bread and Peace’ at the end of the First World War.
The four-day strike eventually ended with the Czar forced to abdicate and the government that stepped in granted women the right to vote for the first time. The start date of the strike was Sunday, 23 February in Russia, which used the Julian calendar at the time. In the Gregorian calendar that translated to 8 March, and that became the date that would become synonymous with International Women’s Day in future.
The first International Women’s Day took place in 1975 when the United Nations officially designated it the Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.
What is the theme of International Women’s Day 2023?
In 1996 the UN announced the first annual theme for International Women’s Day, which was designed to shed light on a specific part of the experiences of women each year. That first iteration was the theme of “Celebrating the past, Planning for the Future,” followed in 1997 by “Women at the Peace table.”
This year’s theme is “DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality”.
Despite the rapid growth of the industry in recent years, there remains a significant gender gap in the technology industry. This trend threatens to alienate women from one of the fastest-growing sectors and could deprive the industry of valuable expertise.
To help address issues like the underrepresentation of women in STEM, this year’s theme is designed to better include women in the fields of digital and artificial intelligence (AI). Currently, women make up just 22% of workers in AI, and 44% of AI systems assessed demonstrate some form of gender bias.