By the numbers: Women's progress (or not) around the world

Turkish women protest in Ankara on Thursday, International Women's Day.

Story highlights

  • International Women's Day is March 8
  • It was first observed more than 100 years ago
  • Take a look at how U.S. women compare with others in areas of jobs, education and more

What's it like to be a woman today? On Thursday, the world marks International Women's Day, first observed more than 100 years ago.

Decades later, take a look at how women fare in the areas of education, jobs and more, and how American women compare with others around the world:

Health and well-being

86 years -- The average life expectancy for a woman in Japan, the longest in the world

81 years -- The average life expectancy for a woman in the United States

44 years -- The average life expectancy for women in Afghanistan and Zimbabwe, the shortest in the world

16.5 million -- The approximate number of women living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, 50% of the total number

59% -- The percentage of HIV-positive adults in Sub-Saharan Africa who are female, approximately 12.9 million people

21% -- The percentage of HIV-positive adults in North America who are female, approximately 252,000 people

54% -- The percentage of U.S. women who died of heart disease, cancer and strokes in 2007 out of all causes -- approximately 658,000 people

177 -- Number of countries that provide paid maternity leave

0 -- Amount of paid maternity leave guaranteed in the United States

Labor and employment

91% -- The percentage of a man's paycheck that a woman in Sweden earns, working in manufacturing

57% -- The percentage of a man's paycheck that a woman in South Korea earns, working in manufacturing

81% -- The percentage of a man's paycheck that a woman in the United States earns, in all fields

58% -- The percentage of U.S. women who participate in the work force, up from 33% in 1950

0 -- Number of female CEOs in the top 20 companies on the Fortune 500

Education

86% -- The percentage of girls enrolled in primary school worldwide

39 million -- Number of girls worldwide who are not in school, 54% of the total number of children

850,000 -- Number of girls in North America and Western Europe not in school

510 million -- Number of illiterate women worldwide, two-thirds of the total number of illiterate people

87% -- Percentage of U.S. women who have at least a high school diploma

28% -- Percentage of U.S. women who have at least a college degree

Politics

95 -- The number of women serving in the 112th Congress in the United States

17% -- The percentage of U.S. Congress members who are female

56% -- The percentage of Rwanda's parliament who are female

2 -- The number of countries that allowed women to vote in 1911

2 -- The number of countries that prohibit women from voting in 2012 (Saudi Arabia and Vatican City)

      Leading Women

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