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
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)