Why are there less women in sporting Boardrooms?

Why are there less women in sporting Boardrooms?

The number of women in top jobs at UK sporting bodies is declining, according to The Women in Sport survey.

The report, which collated data in 2016, found that the number of women in top jobs has declined by six per cent since 2014.

Nine out of the 68 bodies have no women in senior leadership positions, with The British Taekwondo Council having no women whatsoever in any leadership or Board roles – BBC News reports. Just seven per cent of the Football Association's Non-Executive Directors are women.

In comparison, England Netball's Board is made up by 90% women - 60% of its senior leadership positions are made up of women and 80% in mid-leadership positions are female.

However, 33 of Britain's 68 sporting bodies do not meet looming government guidelines. A new code coming into effect as of 1 April states that organisations must have a minimum of 30% women on their Board, or risk losing funding.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Ruth Holdaway, Women in Sport’s Chief Executive, said: "There is positivity in the fact that in the seven years we have been doing this audit, we have seen an increase in the number of women at every level of leadership in sport.

"But now we are seeing the figures plateau and for Non-Executive Directors on Boards, the figure has sat at around 30% for the last couple of years.

“That is an average across all of the governing bodies,” Holdaway explains. “That masks a disparity, some do better than that and some do worse than that. Half of the national bodies are hitting the 30% target; the other half have work to do."

Director of Sport at funding body Sport England, Phil Smith, said organisations must draw up a strategy on how they will reach the 30% target by 1 April. “They have enough time to write an action plan,” Smith told the BBC.

“Public investment in any sports organisations is dependent on organisations reaching the standards of the code, anyone who is not able to reach them or have adequate plans to do so, won't be able to attract public investment."

The report falls on International Women’s Day, a campaign designed to encourage women and girls to achieve their ambitions, challenge bias and promote gender equality.

Embracing diversity in the world of sports, sportswear brand Nike has unveiled the launch of a new product – a performance hijab.

The pull-on hijab is made of light fabric which is designed with small holes allowing for breathability and an elongated back so it won’t come untucked – The Guardian reports.

The product has been in development for a year and will be sold in 2018. It was tested by athletes including figure skater Zahra Lari, who represents the United Arab Emirates. She posted a photo wearing the hijab on Instagram.

Have your say...

Get ahead of the game by registering now

* By registering you agree that you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions and that Executive Grapevine International Ltd and its partners may contact you regarding relevant content and products.

Most Read