Progress report: Women in economic decision-making in the EU

Progress report: Women in economic decision-making in the EU
The European Commission report “Progress report: Women in economic decision-making in the EU” published on the 5th March 2012, shows that limited progress towards increasing the number of women on company boards has been achieved one year after EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding called for credible self-regulatory measures. Just one in seven board members at Europe’s top firms is a woman (13.7%). This is a slight improvement from 11.8% in 2010. However, it would still take more than 40 years to reach a significant gender balance (at least 40% of both sexes) at this rate.

The report comes one year after EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding challenged publicly-listed companies in Europe to voluntarily increase the number of women in their boardrooms by signing the ‘Women on the Board Pledge for Europe’. By signing this Pledge, companies commit themselves to raise female representation on their boards to 30% by 2015 and 40% by 2020. However, during the past 12 months, only 24 companies across Europe have signed the Pledge.

To identify appropriate measures for addressing the persistent lack of gender diversity in boardrooms of listed companies in Europe, the Commission has launched a public consultation. The Commission is seeking views on possible action at EU level, including legislative measures, to redress the gender imbalance on company boards. The public consultation will run until 28 May 2012. Following this input, the Commission will take a decision on further action later this year.
Find out more: http://ec.europa.eu/justice/newsroom/gender-equality/opinion/120528_en.htm