Global Gender Gap Index 2023 – A Brief Overview

First of all, let’s acknowledge that Australia went from 43rd to 26 on the index, jumping 17 places. This is great cause our previous results were slightly embarrassing, weren’t they…

What is the Global Gender Gap Index?

This Index includes 146 countries and measures the gender gap closure in 4 main subindexes detailed below.

Let’s start with some good news:

  • The Health and Survival subindex displays the highest level of gender parity globally (at 96%) as well as the most clustered distribution of scores.
  • Educational Attainment is the subindex with the second-highest global parity score, with only 4.8% of the gender gap left to close. The majority (117 out of 146) of participating countries have closed at least 95% of their educational gender gap. Now, some countries are still around the 50% mark both in terms of education parity and literacy so let’s not rest on our laurels here.

A little less shiny:

  • Economic Participation and Opportunity stands at 60.1% and the difference between the highest scores (89.5%) and the country with the lowest scores (18.8%) remains extensive (70.8%). This subindex is the only one that receded compared to 2022.
  • Political Empowerment stands at a low 22.1%. In terms of the share of women in ministerial positions, just 11 out of 146 countries have 50% or more ministers who are women while 75 countries have 20% or fewer female ministers (a long way to go)

What does it mean in terms of overall progress and where we are heading?

This year’s results leave the total progress made towards gender parity at an overall 4.1 percentage-point gain since 2006.

On average, over the past 17 years, the gap has been reduced by only 0.24 percentage points per year. If progress towards gender parity proceeds at this same average speed, the overall global gender gap is projected to close in 131 years, compared to a projection of 132 years in 2022. Not fabulous…

That’s why we need to keep sustaining our efforts, especially in the technology field as we will detail below.

So, what about STEM?

There’s an entire section on it in the report named ‘Gender gaps in the labour markets of the future”, “an important set of jobs that are well remunerated and expected to grow in significance and scope in the future”. That sounds about right but, unfortunately, women are very poorly represented in these fields.

  • Women make up only 29.2% of all STEM workers when they represent 49.3% of total employment across non-STEM occupations
  • The share of women in Manager or Director positions drops to 25.5% and 26.7% respectively and in high-level leadership roles such as VP and C-suite, it drops even lower to 17.8% and 12.4%, respectively.

The data also suggest that one first point of intervention in improving numbers could be to smooth the transition for female STEM graduates from university to the world of work. While the percentage of female STEM graduates entering into STEM employment is increasing, the retention of women in STEM one year after graduating sees a significant drop.

Now, this is not all doom and gloom, The fraction of women in STEM jobs has nonetheless grown by 1.58 percentage points from 27.6% in 2015, and the growth outpaces that for non-STEM jobs (0.37 percentage points). So let’s keep at it and make it go faster.

Believe us, we know DEI is hard work but it is crucial, especially when STEM, including AI, is the highest-growing sector that will have a tremendous impact on the future of gender equity.

By starting your Project F accreditation you are already making a difference and we are here to help with your roadblocks. And if you haven’t started our certification process, talk to us today.

If you want to do more and remove systemic barriers for women in tech, look into the Project F certification programs here or start by evaluating where your company stands with our Pulse Check.

And if you’re a startup, Project F has the perfect cost-effective solution that will enable you to easily weave DEI into the fabric of your business for sustainable outcomes! Check out our Gender Balance Toolkits here.

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Further reading

How to build a genuinely diverse and inclusive tech workforce without underestimating women’s abilities and potential.
By prioritizing Diversity and Inclusion, startups can tap into a multitude of benefits that will propel their success. Let’s explore.
Uncover the differences between traditional and progressive HR and how the latter is essential to build diversity and inclusion in the tech industry, especially on the verge of the fifth revolution.