Despite a narrowing gender wage gap, a new study contends that it will take an alarming number of years for women to earn the same as their male counterparts — that is, 202.
According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index, only 58 percent of the gap in economic participation and opportunity between men and women across the world has been closed, with minimal progress made since last year.
In fact, the significant disparity across work, politics, education and health means that another 108 years will pass before the forum expects to bridge that overall global gender gap.
Among the four sectors, the analysis found that the economic opportunity gap is the most challenging to eliminate — particularly as artificial intelligence and other technology-related fields could potentially create a new category for this gender gap.
“More than ever, societies cannot afford to lose out on the skills, ideas and perspectives of half of humanity to realize the promise of a more prosperous and human-centric future that well-governed innovation and technology can bring,” wrote Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman. “There remains much to be done.”
Evaluating senior official roles in the workplace, the index — which began recording data in 2006 — determined that only 34 percent of global managers (out of the 144 countries assessed) were women. Since last year, 60 countries have managed to reduce the gap, while 50 have regressed and 34 have remained at the same level.
The United States kept its same No. 19 ranking, compared with the previous year, but slid down two spots to No. 51 in the overall global index.
“Industries must proactively hardwire gender parity in the future of work through effective training, reskilling and upskilling interventions and tangible job transition pathways, which will be key to narrowing these emerging gender gaps and reversing the trends we are seeing today,” said Saadia Zahidi, member of the World Economic Forum’s managing board. “It’s in their long-term interest because diverse businesses perform better.”
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