Women and men in decision-making: highlights (Fourth quarter 2013) RSS
An update of the European Commission's database on women and men in decision-making has recently been completed and includes:
- A quarterly update of data on political decision-making at European and national levels. Data were collected between end October and mid-November and reflect changes since the last update in August 2013.
- An annual update of data on key decision makers in the following areas: politics at regional level, national administrations, and the environment. Data were collected from August to end November.
In the political arena, selected developments in terms of gender balance include:
- Early parliamentary elections held in the Czech Republic in October 2013 resulted in a slight decrease of the share of female MPs (one representative in five is a woman). In Norway too, the elections resulted in a very slight decrease of the share of women in the national parliament; women account for 38% of members (down 1 pp). In Germany, Austria and Luxembourg changes were in the other direction (+3 pp to 36%, +4 pp to 33% and +1 pp to 23%, respectively). The result is that overall the average share of women in lower houses of national parliaments has remained at the same level (27%) across the EU-28 throughout 2013.
- Similarly, the EU-28 average share of women senior ministers in governments stands at 27%. In the last quarter, government reshuffles had mixed results. In Bulgaria and Romania, the cabinets have expanded to include one more member and in both cases the member is a woman (+4 pp to 39% and +2 pp to 21%, respectively); while in Denmark, Germany and Latvia, the cabinets were reduced by one member, i.e. a woman who was not replaced, resulting in a reduced share of women senior ministers; 45% (- 3 pp), 33% (-5 pp) and 23% (- 6 pp) respectively. In the Finnish cabinet a man replaced a woman, which resulted in a decrease of 6 pp down to 47%.
- In the last quarter of 2013, regional elections were held in Italy, Slovakia, and Denmark. In Italy, these resulted in a 3 percentage point increase in the share of woman in the regional executive (now 29%). Elections in Slovakia and Denmark saw changes of just 1 percentage point for regional assemblies (from 16% to 15% and from 34% to 35% respectively).
For national administrations the average share of women holding positions in the two top administrative levelsacross the EU-28 has increased incrementally since 2012. The highest level of administrators (Level 1) now has an average of 30% women (up from 29%) while the figure for Level 2 is very close to the gender balance mark (39% up from 37%).
Selected developments for decision-makers in political and administrative roles with competencies in environment at international, European and national level include:
- In 2013, the share of women in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Bureau of the Conference of the Parties (COP) was nearly 10 pp lower than in 2012 (from 36% to 27%). However, the average percentage of women in the national delegations of the EU-28 Member States to the COP and to the two permanent subsidiary bodies to the UNFCCC increased 2 pp between 2012 and 2013 (43% and 49% respectively).
- Within the European institutions, the share of women in Commissioners’ cabinets with responsibility for environmental issues increased from 33% to 42% but there are now fewer women directors of European Commission DGs with environment portfolios (6 percentage points lower, down to 26%).
- At the national level, while the average share of women senior ministers in the EU-28 in charge of issues related to the environment did not change over the past year, the share of women junior ministers increased 4 pp, so that just under a quarter are now women. Within national administrations, women currently account for 29% of administrators at level 1 dealing with environmental issues (-3 pp) and 35% of administrators at level 2 (+2 pp).