Women in Tech SK

Bright Future: The State of Women in Tech in South Korea in 2023

Post by: Abbey Baldacchino
Published: 12 July 2023
Women in Tech SK

A Snapshot of Gender Diversity in South Korea:



25% of all employees in Indian Tech Industry are Women



Women in South Korea have always played a crucial role in shaping the landscape of the Tech Industry. From computer programming to telecommunications, women have made significant progress.

One such pioneer is Park Hyeon-joo, who became the first South Korean woman to earn a degree in computer science in the 1970s. Despite facing scepticism and prejudice, she persevered and went on to establish herself as a leading expert in software development. Her groundbreaking work paved the way for future generations of women in tech.

Another notable figure is Lee Hye-young, who made significant contributions to the field of telecommunications. In the 1980s, she played a key role in the development of South Korea’s first mobile phone network. Her expertise and determination propelled her into leadership positions, where she advocated for gender equality in the tech industry.

The Impact of Cultural Norms on Women’s Tech Careers

Historically in South Korea, cultural norms have traditionally dictated gender roles, often directing women towards more traditional fields like education and healthcare. This has resulted in a limited number of women pursuing careers in technology. However, as the tech industry becomes increasingly pivotal to the nation’s economy, more women are venturing into the innovative world of tech.

The growing recognition of the importance of diversity in the tech sector is helping to close the gender gap in Tech. Companies understand that diverse teams lead to better innovation and problem-solving. As a result, initiatives aimed at encouraging women to pursue careers in tech have gained traction. Organisations like “Women in Tech” and “Girls Who Code” have been instrumental in providing support, mentorship, and educational opportunities for aspiring female technologists.

The South Korean government has also taken steps to promote gender equality in the tech industry. They have implemented policies that incentivise companies to hire and retain more women in tech roles. Additionally, they have launched programs to provide scholarships and grants specifically for women pursuing STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields.

Current Representation of Women in South Korean Tech Industry

Statistical Overview: Women in Tech

Although progress has been made, South Korea still lags behind in terms of gender equality. According to recent studies, women account for only 25% of the tech workforce. While this may seem disheartening, it is important to celebrate the progress that has been made and focus on the opportunities that lie ahead.

Prominent Women Leaders in South Korean Tech

Despite the challenges, South Korea boasts an impressive lineup of women leaders in the tech industry. From CEOs to engineers, these women are paving the way for a brighter and more inclusive tech future in South Korea.

Including Han Seong-sook, the former CEO of Naver Corporation, a South Korean internet conglomerate. Under her leadership, Naver focused on AI and global expansion. She aimed to position the company as a global technology leader and made significant investments in AI research and development.

YJ Min also serves as a leader in the Tech Industry, working at CTO at Fitness Technology company BodiCodi. She gained her MBA from MIT, showing a commitment to career success in Tech. Having also previously held a CEO position at Tech company Kono, Min continues to set an example for Women hopeful to make an impact in Tech.

Challenges Faced by Women in South Korea’s Tech Industry

Gender bias and discrimination: Unfortunately, these continue to pose significant challenges for women in South Korea’s tech industry. Stereotypes and preconceived notions often hinder the progress and growth of women in the workplace.

Balancing Family & Career: In a society where family values hold great importance, balancing family and career can be a unique challenge for women in South Korea’s tech sector. The societal pressure to prioritise family responsibilities often puts women in a difficult position.

Government and Corporate Initiatives to Promote Gender Equality in Tech

Government Policies and Programs

The South Korean government has implemented policies and programs to promote gender diversity in the tech industry. Initiatives include the Gender Equality in Employment Act, support for female entrepreneurs, gender quotas on corporate boards, and tech skills training for women. These efforts aim to provide equal opportunities, increase representation, and bridge the gender gap in the tech sector.

Corporate Initiatives and Success Stories

Corporate giants in South Korea are stepping up to the plate and taking an active role in promoting gender equality in tech. Through their initiatives, they not only empower women employees but also tap into a wider talent pool, fostering innovation and driving business success.

Samsung has made efforts to increase gender diversity through initiatives like the Women in Tech program. They provide mentoring and networking opportunities, scholarships, and support for women-led startups. Samsung has also set targets to increase the representation of women in leadership positions.

Kakao has established a Diversity & Inclusion Council to promote gender equality and diversity within the company. They have implemented policies and programs to support work-life balance, enhance women’s leadership development, and provide equal opportunities for career growth.

The Future of Women in South Korea’s Tech Industry

Emerging Trends and Opportunities

The future is bright for women in South Korea’s tech industry. As emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and blockchain gain momentum, new opportunities are cropping up, waiting to be seized by women who are bold enough to challenge the status quo. The tech industry recognises the value of diverse perspectives and is actively seeking women who can contribute to shaping the future.

Inspiring the Next Generation of Women in Tech

One of the keys to a more inclusive and diverse tech industry lies in inspiring the next generation of women. By providing young girls with role models and access to STEM education, South Korea is nurturing a culture where women are encouraged to pursue their passions and careers in tech. Through outreach programs, mentorship initiatives, and education reforms, the nation is shaping a future where gender equality is the norm, and women boldly lead the way in technology.

Want to hear more about the state of women in tech? Read more of our articles here.