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Report: Sex and Power: 5,400 women missing from top jobs
A report published today by the UK's Equality and Human Rights Commission shows a continuing trend of women being passed over for top jobs in Britain. More than 5,400 women are missing from Britain’s 26,000 most powerful posts.
From the press release:
A new report, published today by the Commission, shows a continuing trend of women being passed over for top jobs in Britain. More than 5,400 women are missing from Britain’s 26,000 most powerful posts.
The report, Sex & Power 2011, measures the number of women in positions of power and influence across 27 occupational categories in the public and private sectors.
The Commission’s report calculates that at the current rate of change it will take around 70 years to reach an equal number of men and women directors of FTSE 100 companies. It also found it could be up to 70 years before there are an equal number of women MPs in parliament – another 14 general elections.
Worryingly, the results of this year’s report differ very little from those in the previous report of 2008..
Figures from this year’s report reveal that, while women are graduating from university in increasing numbers and achieve better degree results than men, and despite level pegging with men in their twenties, they are not entering management ranks at the same rate, and many remain trapped in the layer below senior management.
Among this year’s findings were:
In politics women represent:
22.2 per cent of MPs (up from 19.3 per cent in 2008)
17.4 per cent of Cabinet members (down from 26.1 per cent in 2008)
21.9 per cent of members of the House of Lords (up from 19.7 per cent in 2008)
13.2 per cent of Local authority council leaders (down from 14.3 per cent in 2008)
In business women represent:
12.5 per cent of directors of FTSE 100 companies (up from 11 per cent in 2008)
7.8 per cent of directors in FTSE 250 companies (up from 7.2 per cent in 2008)
In media and culture, women represent:
9.5 per cent of national newspaper editors (down from 13.6 per cent in 2008)
6.7 per cent of chief executives of media companies in the FTSE 350 and the director general of the BBC (down from 10.5 per cent in 2008)
26.1 per cent of directors of major museums and art galleries (up from 17.4 per cent in 2008)
In the public and voluntary sector, women represent:
12.9 per cent of senior members of the judiciary (up from 9.6 per cent in 2008)
22.8 per cent of local authority chief executives (up from 19.5 per cent in 2008)
35.5 per cent of head teachers of secondary schools (down from 36.3 per cent in 2008)
14.3 per cent of university vice chancellors (down from 14.4 per cent in 2008)
Studies have shown that outdated working patterns where long hours are the norm, inflexible organisations and the unequal division of domestic responsibilities are major barriers to women’s participation in positions of authority.
The British economy is paying the price for this exclusion. It has been suggested that greater diversity on corporate boards would improve business performance and increase levels of corporate social responsibility.