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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Women’s role in Polish business on the wane: study

18.01.2022 13:00
Men occupy 80 percent of CEO positions and 75 percent of senior boardroom roles in Poland, with female representation falling, according to a new study cited by the state PAP news agency. 
Men occupy 80 percent of CEO roles and 75 percent of boardroom positions in Poland, with female representation falling, according to a new study.
Men occupy 80 percent of CEO roles and 75 percent of boardroom positions in Poland, with female representation falling, according to a new study.Photo: Pixabay

At the end of last year, 32.5 percent of Polish firms were owned by women, a drop of 3 percentage points on 2020, according to the report, commissioned by Success Written in Lipstick (FSPS), a foundation that aims to support female entrepreneurship. 

The study, carried out by commercial data provider Dun & Bradstreet, found that the number of female CEOs in Poland fell from 23.5 percent in 2020 to 19.5 percent in 2021, while the number of women holding senior executive roles on company boards dropped from 30 percent to 25 percent. 

“This means that men hold as many as 80 percent of CEO jobs and 75 percent of boardroom positions, even though women account for over 40 percent of the Polish work force,” the foundation said, citing data from the state-run Central Statistical Office (GUS).

Female representation also decreased when it came to top positions at companies listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. Only 6 percent of the CEOs of these firms are female, a drop of 1.5 percentage points compared with 2020.

According to the foundation, women continue to be sidelined in public debate, with men representing three-quarters of experts on media panels.

The foundation said that the falling number of women in business is to an extent attributable to the coronavirus pandemic.

In its survey of female company owners and co-owners, a third of the respondents said they had experienced business problems over the past year, more than a quarter saw their revenue dwindle, and 8 percent were forced to suspend operations, while 20 percent had to switch industries due to the pandemic.

'Knowledge Has No Gender'

In the wake of the report, the foundation and its partners on Monday launched the second edition of its campaign entitled “Knowledge Has No Gender.”

Comprising a series of debates on various topics, from stereotypes to artificial intelligence, and featuring female managers and businesswomen, the campaign seeks to strengthen the role of women in public debate and reduce disparities in media presence between male and female experts. 

“Much is still to be done in this respect,” said the foundation’s CEO Olga Kozierowska, as quoted by the PAP news agency.

(pm/gs)

Source: PAP