You're one of your country's leading sports stars.

You're at the peak of your career and you've just won one of the biggest tournaments in tennis.

What do you think people would want to know in your post-win press conference? Probably not your parenthood plans.

Tennis champion and UN Women Goodwill Ambassador for South Asia, Sania Mirza, who won the Wimbledon women's doubles with Swiss player Martina Hingis in 2015, explains:

"I was sitting at the press conference, after the Wimbledon victory, with the trophy, and I was asked a question: 'OK, that's great, congratulations, what are your plans for motherhood?'"

The moment was a sign we need to change societal expectations of women, she said during a session on Inspiring LeadHers at the World Economic Forum's India Economic Summit.

It's "as if you're just not complete as a woman, no matter what you do, if you don't become a mother, or you don't become a mother of two," she believes.


What is the World Economic Forum's India Economic Summit 2019?

Under the theme, Innovating for India: Strengthening South Asia, Impacting the World, the World Economic Forum's India Economic Summit 2019 will convene key leaders from government, the private sector, academia and civil society on 3-4 October to accelerate the adoption of Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies and boost the region’s dynamism.

Hosted in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), the aim of the Summit is to enhance global growth by promoting collaboration among South Asian countries and the ASEAN economic bloc.

The meeting will address strategic issues of regional significance under four thematic pillars:

• The New Geopolitical Reality – Geopolitical shifts and the complexity of our global system

• The New Social System – Inequality, inclusive growth, health and nutrition

• The New Ecological System – Environment, pollution and climate change

• The New Technological System – The Fourth Industrial Revolution, science, innovation and entrepreneurship

Discover a few ways the Forum is creating impact across India.

Read our guide to how to follow #ies19 across our digital channels. We encourage followers to post, share, and retweet by tagging our accounts and by using our official hashtag.

Become a Member or Partner to participate in the Forum's year-round annual and regional events. Contact us now.

Closing the gender gap

The discussion panel, which included India's Minister of Women and Child Development Smriti Zubin Irani, agreed that the time needed to close the gender gap was too long.

"108 years to ensure gender parity has to be unacceptable to every citizen across the world," Smriti Zubin Irani argued.

There are positive signs, though, the panelists agreed, with progress being made across the region.

This was reflected in the Global Gender Gap Report 2018, with South Asia on course to be the second region to close the gap - in 70 years, after Western Europe.

Image: World Economic Forum