If we continue on current trends, we will need to wait another 217 years for the economic gender gap to disappear, according to the findings of World Economic Report.
The gender gap widened for the first time in a decade, and the situation of women in 60 countries worsened, reveals the annual publication of the World Economic Forum (WEF). Numerically speaking, in order to reach universal gender parity, we need to eliminate a gap of 32%. The nearly 400-page long document, published in joint efforts of scholars from WEF, Harvard, and Berkeley, describes alarming changes in detail.
The sudden drop is partially an effect of a decline in several big countries, including USA, China, and India. Interestingly, the USA under Trump administration dropped four places to 49th. On the other hand, the authors of the study observed a general slowdown in the rate of improvements too.
The WEF publishes a gender gap report every year since 2006, each time measuring four main pillars of the gender-based disparities: economic participation and opportunity, education, political empowerment, and health and survival.
While educational and health-care dimensions of gender-gap have been overcome in great proportion (95% and 96% of the gap is closed, respectively), political and economic empowerment remain a huge challenge for the world. In politics, the gap amounts to 23%.
Overall, the fastest growing gap concerns the economic pillar. Currently, barely 58% of the economic participation gap has been closed. The figure represents the lowest number since 2008. This does not mean, however, that women are being paid less and less, or that they are being paid less for the same job as men. In fact, the salary gap across the OECD is only 2%. The problem lies in that women are more likely than men to work in unpaid positions, in sectors with lower average pay (e.g. public sector), and have fewer chances to ascend to high-paid leadership positions. Women are also frequently subjected to the so-called motherhood penalties.
Top Ten Countries:
- New Zealand
Bottom Five Countries:
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