The Economist is a weekly print and online publication that “offers authoritative insight and opinion on international news, politics, business, finance, science and technology.” Using data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), The Economist ranked 26 countries according to five indicators: “the number of men and women respectively with post-secondary education; female labour-force participation; the male-female wage gap; the proportion of women in senior jobs; and net child-care costs relative to the average wage.” All of the criteria were not given the same consideration, as “the first four [indicators were] given equal weighting and the fifth a lower one, since not all working women have children.” By giving varying weights to the indicators, the results give equal consideration to women both with and without children. Based on the findings from The Economists Glass Ceiling Index, the 10 best countries for being a working woman are:
Canada was the only North American country to make the top ten. The United States ranked twelfth on this list. South Korea and Japan ranked the lowest partly because “so few women hold down senior jobs (though the new president of South Korea is a woman).”
This is an important listing as the role of women in the workplace is changing. Currently there are more female CEOs and board members than ever before, but still women generally make seventy-cents to the male dollar so we still have some ground to cover. Today’s list highlights the countries that are making strides so that women have the greatest chance of being treated equally to their male co-workers.
This Index might be beneficial for a woman thinking of relocating as it will help assess employment opportunities. This index can also serve as a wakeup call to countries that are lacking when it comes to the advancement of women in the workplace. Hopefully highlighting the countries that are doing well will inspire others towards positive change by means of incentives or legislation to help achieve workplace equality for women. As a Canadian it makes me proud that we came in fourth in the world on this list. Hopefully first is in the future.