The Paula Principle

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More

WEF report: double depression

The latest World Economic Forum report on the Gender Pay Gap is depressing for two reasons. I applaud the WEF for its attention to the issue, but I find its 'solution' simplistic. First, it shows that worldwide the cause of greater equality has been put into reverse. The latest trends means that it will take "a staggering 257 years to close the gap on economic participation for women – compared to 202 years in last year’s report." We know that the pandemic has added to women's unpaid work burdens; caused many women to drop out of the employment; and hit the occupations in which women tend to work harder than…
Read More

AI and Gender

We're starting to learn more about the biases buried deep within our data. Many of the knowledge bases that we have long thought of as objective turn out to be systematically skewed. I first became aware of this reading Mark Glezerman's Gender Medicine, which brought to light the way medical research uses evidence derived from research on men only. This can have literally fatal consequences, for example in the way women's strokes fail to be recognised and treated. Glezerman's book was followed by the better-known Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez. Awareness of this has been boosted recently because of the way AI systems use existing data to bake in biases.…
Read More

GPG: the effects of age – a different ‘scarring’

I've just been through a major desk refurb. This was an actual physical reconstruction (courtesy of my brother-in-law's carpentering talents) and not just a clearing out of papers, but I did come across a few interesting items that had slipped out of sight. These included a press cutting from a few months ago on the gender pay gap for the over 50s. The piece cited a report from an organisation called Rest Less. I couldn't find the report on their website but the headline showed a median salary gap of 23% for full timers over 50, and 25% for those over 60. This is large in itself, but of course…
Read More

A sad consequence of the PP

South Korea is probably the most extreme example of the Paula Principle. The undervaluing of Korean women's competences is having tragic consequences. A very simple three-step process shows this, illustrated by the OECD charts below. First, Koreans have made quite extraordinary educational progress, if you compare the educational levels of 55-64 year olds with those two generations later. Secondly, it is Korean women who have been propelling this stellar rise up the educational tables. From very low levels a generation ago, 59% of young Korean women now enter Bachelor programmes - a lead of 6% over their male counterparts. The graduation rates are unfortunately missing from current OECD data, but…
Read More

Later life GPG, and specialisation

Well, it's a new year, and that has to be good news. If not, we're in trouble....No, it's time to be positive. Or at least persistent. I saw a recent news item which referred to research on gender pay differences by an organisation called Rest Less. The organisation's title sounds rather forbidding - no slacking here - but it offers advice and encouragement across a range of areas, including work, health and lifestyle. One section of the website that naturally appealed to me was on learning; it offers a good range of opportunities, for instance on courses leading to work in the field of health.. I could't find details of…
Read More

GPG reporting – what UK needs to do

The Fawcett Society and the Kings' College Global Institute for Women's Leadership have just published an interesting report comparing the UK to nine other countries in the practice of gender pay gap reporting. My impression has been that the legislation requiring companies with over 250 employees to produce a range of data on GPG was a big step forwards. I still think that; for one thing it's enabled people like ShareAction's AGM activists to ask probing questions of corporate behaviour - and their intentions for the future. Pushing the Paula Principle I've been able to put questions about career trajectories, as well as just pay gaps. There are some quite…
Read More

Digital skills, Japan and the PP in Covid times

Covid has meant that almost all of us are having to use more technological skills - and in many cases to learn them. Communication IT is the most obvious form, with Zoom, MicrosoftTeams and so on to the fore in helping us stay in touch, personally as well as professionally. But international analyses are increasingly showing how in the short term at least there is a shift in the labour market which favours digital skills - and therefore risks accentuating the gender divide. A recent Financial Times piece on this led me to a broad-ranging presentation by OECD's Mariagrazia Squilliardici, covering issues such as digital literacy, careers advice, workplace climate,…
Read More

HEPI, careers and convergence

Covid seems to have diverted me from posting on PP issues for quite a while - no excuse. But a recent report on graduate earnings from the Higher Education Policy Institute brought me back to the case. The HEPI staff have painstaking pulled together data from a whole range of sources, from official longitudinal surveys to Linkedin. The headline-grabber funding was that the graduate gender pay gap (GGPG to its friends) is biggest for Russell Group universities, at 17%, but the analysis covered many other angles. It's worth noting first that the female/male educational gap continues to increase. In 2017 the F/M split at undergraduate level was 57/43, and this…
Read More

Net-zero economy: a competence challenge

I've been reading a most stimulating report from Nesta on preparing the UK workforce for the transition to a net-zero economy. The report offers a new approach to categorising employment sectors, defining them in terms of two dimensions: their current emissions, and the level of their commitment to a transition. This generates a fourfold typology. The green sector covers 'leaders' and 'neutrals'; the brown sector covers 'followers' and 'laggards', defined as follows: — Leaders: Industries in this category are the most eco-friendly, as they do not produce high levels of carbon emissions and are involved in activities that directly protect the environment across the economy: professional, scientific and technical activities;…
Read More

Better than equality?

In a previous post I discussed different possible effects of the current pandemic on gender and careers. On the plus side, the wholesale shift to working at home should (should...) blow a big hole in the prejudice against flexible working, with its related bias against anything that does not look like a full-time career. It will take time before we see how strong this effect is. I was ambivalent over how working at home would affect the domestic division of labour. It's possible that men actually being present at home would lead them to share childcare more equally. But I listened in on a recent RSA webinar on the future…
Read More