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Company culture

Women still not making it onto the boards of Asian companies

Over the last five years the number of women on boards globally has been ascending but Asia shows no signs of progress.

Women on boards: Asia scores zero

Of the 1,016 Asian publicly listed companies included in the new Thomson Reuters D&I Index, the median percentage of women on boards was zero (just over half have no women on their boards) and has seen little progress over the last five years. Looking at the latest fiscal year data (FY0), 54% of all companies still had no women on their boards.

Women on boards last five years by region


Where there is progress

The Oceania region saw a dramatic improvement in median representation of women on the boards of 248 mostly Australian companies. Most of this can be attributed to the ASX (Australian Securities Exchange) reporting guidelines, which caused a significant increase in disclosure around diversity-related information through the introduction of objectives.

Europe continues to see steady and strong growth in female representation on the boards of companies driven in no small part by mandatory regulations or quotas in countries such as France, where a 2011 law requires the CAC 40 boards to have women account for at least 40% of their members by 2017.

Another driver of growth has also been thanks to “voluntary” style approaches like in the UK which have seen substantial improvements over the same period.

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