Women remain underrepresented in company boardrooms and in executive positions, according to a new report. (iStock)

Women on corporate boards: pace remains slow

Share

How’s Canada doing with issues of gender equality in the business world?

Depends on who you ask.

And when.

Almost a year ago, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development delivered a report praising Canada for making “significant progress” on gender equality, especially in education and employment.

The OECD report noted a gender-based wage gap with women earning 88 cents for every dollar of hourly wages earned by men and said Canada was lagging behind in gender parity in Parliament and, tellingly, on company boards of directors.

Having formal board evaluations, setting term and age limits, and implementing a gender diversity policy are some ways corporations can make progress in diversifying corporate boards. (Shutterstock/Fizkes )

Now, Statistics Canada has confirmed that last assessment.

In 2016, the last year such data was available, Stats Can found 20 per cent of board directorships in Canada were held by women

For comparison, Australia, Belgium, France, Norway, Sweden, Italy and Finland all average more than 30 per cent female directors.

It’s a battle women in business and their male supporters have been fighting for a while–a long while–,pointing out, among other things, that excluding women from boards doesn’t even make good business sense, but, they say, the problem persists.

“We have a long, long way to go before we really see not only the level of diversity across all boards that we would like to see, but also the level of diversity that we know drives real business results,” Camilla Sutton, chief executive of Women in Capital Markets, a not-for-profit organization committed to accelerating diversity in Canada’s financial sector, tells CBC News.

Sutton says that despite plenty of awareness of the problem there’s a distinct lack of action.

New numbers from Statistics Canada released today show 19.4 per cent of board of director positions are held by women in Canada. (Shutterstock / Jacob Lund)

She says too many companies are not taking concrete steps like having formal board evaluations, setting term and age limits and implementing gender diversity policies.

Heather Shantora, chief executive of medical services companies PT Health and InnoCare Ltd., says there is a lack of seats available for women on boards.

“Perhaps board positions need to be kind of limited and then they have to turn over, because is some cases there’s literally not an available seat for women,” Shantora told CBC News.

The gap is nothing new, of course.

A report in 2013 found Canada falling behind other countries when naming women to corporate boards.

In an April 2017, business leaders called for new laws to help technology companies in Canada get more women on corporate boards.

Two months later, a report showed that having women on boards pays off with higher stock price gains — as much as 50 per cent higher, on average.

With files from CBC, CBC News, CBC Business

Share
Categories: Economy, International, Society
Tags: , , , , , ,

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

*