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Female board representation in Ireland surpasses 30% threshold

Written by Robert McHugh, on 11th Apr 2019. Posted in General

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The gender composition of boards in Ireland has surpassed 30% female representation, a 7% increase since 2017. This is according to new research conducted by EY among more than 150 senior leaders in Ireland. The average gender composition of boards now comprises 31% women and 69% men. 

In spite of progress made in gender representation on boards, just 35% say their organisation has taken appropriate measures to address the causes of any gender pay gap, and even within that group, 38% still say that men are more likely to be promoted in their organisation. While 83% of organisations aspire to gender parity across all levels, 13% explicitly state that they do not.

Fifty nine percent favour regulation or legislation as a driver for creating more diverse and inclusive organisations, an increase of 10% since 2018.

The third annual report from EY on Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) across the island of Ireland was launched this morning at the annual EY Diversity & Inclusion InMotion Summit held in the Mansion House, Dublin, where Ireland’s leading experts in the area gathered. A keynote address was delivered by Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr. Katherine Zappone, T.D.

Speaking at the event, Director of Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Service at EY Ireland, Olivia McEvoy said, "While it is encouraging to see that progress is being made on boards, the lived experience for women in work can be a different matter, highlighted by the fact that even within the seemingly more progressive organisations, it is perceived the men are still more likely to be promoted. More starkly, just 26% of organisations have a specific programme in place to develop diverse leadership." 

She added, "More focus is needed on building up the next generation of leaders, and measuring the experience of different groups around promotion, reward and other factors. Diversity in all its forms is fluid, and is not something that can be “achieved” and forgotten about. It will continue to evolve in rhythm with employment cycles, so carefully-planned strategies backed by leadership are essential for sustained improvement."

Source: www.businessworld.ie

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