Tailored Approaches Needed for Gender Balance in Asia
The lack of gender parity in leadership roles, pay and conditions is a worldwide phenomenon but particularly pronounced in Asia. As described in a white paper released on the occasion of International Women’s Day, our findings from in-depth interviews with 42 men and women across Asia’s financial services and technology industries, show that 86 percent of respondents believe gender discrimination is still prevalent in the Asian workforce. Meanwhile 79 percent felt that this discrimination is mostly unconscious, meaning without the intent to discriminate. Caused by widespread “second generation gender bias”, such discrimination is particularly dangerous because it is hidden. It is one reason for the numbers of women managers rapidly tapering off as they ascend the Asian corporate ladder, leaving the higher echelons of management and boards overwhelmingly populated by men. Gender initiatives to bridge the gap have so far failed to connect. Statistics like female board representation rates demonstrate...
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