Women are projected to achieve parity in leadership in this country in the year 2085, according to a 2014 study by the Center for American Progress.
If medical advancements outstrip gender parity progress, maybe I will raise a glass to celebrate when I am 115.
“Although women have outnumbered men on college campuses since 1988, they have earned at least a third of law degrees since 1980, were fully a third of medical school students by 1990, and, since 2002, have outnumbered men in earning undergraduate business degrees since 2002. They have not moved up to positions of prominence and power in America at anywhere near the rate that should have followed.
In a broad range of fields, their presence in top leadership positions—as equity law partners, medical school deans, and corporate executive officers—remains stuck at a mere 10 percent to 20 percent. Their “share of voice”—the average proportion of their representation on op-ed pages and corporate boards, as TV pundits, and in Congress—is just 15 percent.
In fact, it’s now estimated that, at the current rate of change, it will take until 2085 for women to reach parity with men in leadership roles in our country.”
Judith Warner is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress.
So why the lag for women in reaching leadership roles? The reasons are complex, but an increasing number of research studies into the question reveal some consistent conclusions.
- Women continue to bear a heavier burden for family care, according to this Pew Research Study
- Workplace family policies in the US lag far behind leading industrialized nations
- Gender bias is alive and well in the workplace; this Forbes article explains it well.
- A lack of female role models leads to a smaller network, fewer mentors, lack of executive sponsorship. These issues, and many more, are exposed in eye-opening 2016 Report on Women in the Workplace, a collaboration between McKinsey and LeanIn.org.
In order to impact change we have to understand leading causes. The reasons behind the lack of gender parity in leadership are complex. Momentum has invited Dr. Heather Foust-Cummings, a leading expert on diversity in executive leadership, to deliver a keynote address at our biennial breakfast event during Women’s History Month to explore the dynamics of men and women in leadership. Register here, seating is limited.
Momentum is dedicated to bringing about faster change for women in leadership in Alabama because it’s good for business, good for our economy, and good for the community. Working with our corporate partners we aim to put Alabama ahead of the curve when it comes to women in leadership. And perhaps this author will be able to raise a glass to gender parity a bit sooner.