Workplace gender equality will not be achieved until the year, 2186, according to new research.
According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap 2016 report, global economic parity between the sexes could take 170 years after a dramatic slowdown in progress.
It was discovered that the slowdown was due to imbalances within salaries and labour force participation, despite the face that in 95 countries women attend university in equal or higher numbers than men.
The new research also found that Britain had also dropped to number 20 in the top twenty most gender equal countries. Iceland, Finland and Norway all made the top three, while Rwanda overtook Ireland to fifth position. The Philippines, Slovenia, New Zealand and Nicaragua make up the final top four nations.
However, the United States and Australia rank even further behind at 45th and 46th place respectively.
The World Economic Forum have said the report shows that the world is facing an acute misuse of talent by not acting faster to tackle gender inequality, which could put economic growth at risk and deprive economies of the opportunity to develop.
The report is part of the World Economic Forum’s annual benchmarking exercise that measures the progress being made towards gender parity. The report studies 144 countries across four areas; educational attainment, health and survival, economic opportunity and political empowerment.
Despite the growing gap, Saadia Zahidi, Head of Education, Gender and Work, and Member of the Executive Committee at the WEF said, “These forecasts are not foregone conclusions. Instead, they reflect the current state of progress and serve as a call to action to policy-makers and other stakeholders to double down on efforts to accelerate gender equality.”
Following the release of the 2016 report, people are now calling for the UK to do more to improve its gender equality.
Jemima Olchawski, head of policy and insight at the Fawcett Society, said, “This report busts the myth that gender inequality is somehow natural or inevitable and highlights how varied performance on closing gender gaps is, across the world, but also within Western Europe.”
“It’s unacceptable that Britain is languishing at 53rd in the world for economic participation, is only 24th for political empowerment and performs below average overall compared to our region.”
“The moral case for gender equality should be enough alone to motivate us to speed up the pace of change.”
“But with evidence suggesting that improving gender equality could add £150 billion to our GDP it’s also clear that we simply can’t afford to wait.”
Following the release of the report, Sophie Walker, leader of the Women’s Equality Party said, “It’s extremely disappointing to see that the UK has fallen to number 20 in the top twenty most gender equal countries and that of 144 countries it can manage only 64th place in terms of health and survival; 53rd place for economic opportunity, and has fallen to 24th place in terms of political empowerment as the number of female MPs has dropped.”
“The United Kingdom should be spearheading progress towards gender equality, instead of contributing to this global showdown in human rights.”
“WE are determined to make a difference in British politics by using electoral force to put our agenda of equal rights to the top of everyone’s agenda.”