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More women on company boards needed: new EIGE data shows sluggish progress

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YiannisK
Posts: 7
Topic starter
(@yiannisk)
Ioannis Konstas
Joined: 2 years ago

The point you are raising is really important and reveals how necessary are gender audits to change the working culture to be more inclusive. 

Stay tuned for more info about the gender audits offered by W4RES!!!

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Marco
Posts: 4
 Marco
(@Marco)
Joined: 5 months ago

On Tuesday, the Council of the European Union and European Parliament negotiators reached an agreement on a law to 'improve gender balance' on the boards of European listed companies. The law stipulates that by 2026 at least 40 per cent of the members of non-executive boards must be composed of "the under-represented sex", i.e. women in the vast majority of cases. Alternatively, women will have to occupy 33 per cent of all executive and non-executive board positions, thus including executive roles such as chairman of the board. Companies that do not comply with these requirements may be fined or have some of their appointments cancelled.

The much-discussed bill was first presented in 2012 by the European Commission, and was only approved by the Council of the European Union last March, after lengthy discussions.

It seems that policymakers has no intention or no means to address the problem in another way. Each time I see such news I have conflicting feelings: is it a step forward or a step back in the path towards gender equality?

What do you think about it?

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Despoina Ntagiakou
Posts: 2
 Despoina Ntagiakou
(@Despoina Ntagiakou)
Joined: 4 months ago

Maybe setting mandatory quotas could be a good start considering the increase in women in Advisory Boards in Italy. It is not the solution, however! Social change in norms, behaviour patterns and values will ensure that women in Boards are not just a target reached but really appreciated and their voices are being heard as they should.

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Alexandra Porrazzo
Posts: 2
 Alexandra Porrazzo
(@Alexandra Porrazzo)
Joined: 4 months ago

It is interesting that there seems to be a 'slowing' of progress towards gender equality, in part because of a resistance to quotas in board rooms. I wonder how this resistence is different in different countries - and if there are cultural elements which prevent quotas from being popular.

To this point, there is a quite interesting paper from 2016 that discusses differences between attitudes to gender equality in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden ( https://dpsa.dk/papers/Shamshiri-Petersen%20Goul%20Andersen.Gender%20equality%20attitudes.DPSA%20paper.pdf). From this study, it seems that Danish people are both less inclined to see quotas as a helpful tool AND less inclined to see gender inequality as a problem.

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