Thursday

19th Oct 2017

Gender equality best in Sweden, worst in Greece

  • Jourova says she will propose new measures later this year to address gender pay gaps (Photo: European Commission)

Sweden and Denmark top the EU in terms of gender equality in society, while Greece and Hungary rank at the bottom.

A report out on Wednesday (11 October) from the European Institute for Gender Equality, an EU agency in Lithuania, noted an overall "snail's pace" in progress towards gender equality in the EU when comparing 2015 to 2005.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

"We are still a long way off from reaching a gender-equal society and all countries in the European Union have room to improve," said the institute's director, Virginija Langbakk, in a statement.

The report ranked EU states on an index score from one to 100 in terms of work, money, knowledge, time, power and health between 2005 and 2015. It also probed issues of violence.

The EU average was 66.2, only a slight improvement of 4.2 points when compared to 2005.

With 100 seen as full equality, Sweden posted the best index score at 82.6, followed by Denmark (76.8). Finland and the Netherlands placed a close third best.

Greece ranked at the bottom with 50, followed by Hungary (50.8) and Slovakia (52.4).

Scores had increased in most other member states, except for the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Finland, Slovakia, and the UK where no progress had been made in 10 years.

The report also noted that Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Spain, and the UK were each ranked two positions lower in the index in 2015 than in 2005.

The biggest improvements were seen in Italy (+ 12.9), followed by Cyprus (+ 9.2). Ireland and Slovenia had also improved their scores by 7.6 points each.

Many of those increases were due, in part, to a better balance in decision-making.

But Langbakk said in some areas, gaps between the two genders is now worse than 10 years ago.

The report noted that 12 EU states have slipped backward on housework, for instance. Overall, some 79 percent of women engaged in daily cooking and housework, compared to only one third of men.

Time is also an issue given that by 2015 only nine EU states (Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Estonia, France, The Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden) offered child care for at least 90 percent of children aged between 3 years old and the mandatory school age.

The EU's commissioner for justice, Vera Jourova, noted she intends to propose further measures later this year to address the gender pay gap.

"Equality is not about making women more like men, but about creating an environment where both sexes can have equal choices," she said.

Earlier this month, she pointed out in a tweet how a marathon in Brussels awarded €1,000 to men who placed first, while giving women only €300.

Stakeholder

We must renew Europe for all Europeans

A call for socialist values and rights at a time when Europe is facing a number of existential threats, says a group of progressive European affairs ministers.

Opinion

Why EU diplomacy needs more women

Greek woman who recently became EU foreign service's gender equality officer could change male-dominated club of international diplomacy.

Analysis

Obesity linked to agricultural policy, new studies say

The number of obese children and adolescents worldwide has risen tenfold in the past four decades, according to the WHO. Health campaigners are pushing for a radical rethink of the EU's common agricultural policy to help tackle the obesity epidemic.

News in Brief

  1. EU summit moved to previous building after fumes scare
  2. Catalonia will 'not back down'
  3. New toxic incident in EU building ahead of summit
  4. Murdered Malta journalist's family invited to Parliament
  5. EU food safety chief denies keeping studies 'secret'
  6. EU states pledge 24,000 resettlement places so far
  7. US ready for arms sale to update Greece's F-16 fleet
  8. Austria's Green leaders step down following election failure

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EU2017EENorth Korea Leaves Europe No Choice, Says Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser
  2. Mission of China to the EUZhang Ming Appointed New Ambassador of the Mission of China to the EU
  3. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  4. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  5. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  6. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  7. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe
  8. CECEE-Privacy Regulation – Hands off M2M Communication!
  9. ILGA-EuropeHealth4LGBTI: Reducing Health Inequalities Experienced by LGBTI People
  10. EU2017EEEHealth: A Tool for More Equal Health
  11. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Tourism a Key Driver for Job Creation and Enhanced Competitiveness
  12. CECENon-Harmonised Homologation of Mobile Machinery Costs € 90 Million per Year

Latest News

  1. EU okays Privacy Shield's first year
  2. EU seeks to decrypt messages in new anti-terror plan
  3. EU agencies defend research ahead of glyphosate vote
  4. Spain points at elections as exit to Catalan crisis
  5. How EU can ensure Daphne Caruana Galizia's legacy survives
  6. Juncker dinner to warm up relations with eastern EU
  7. Court hearing in MEPs 'private' expenses battle
  8. The unbearable lightness of leadership