Key Statistics

Women in Technology

  • If current trends continue, by 2018 the information technology industry will only be able to fill half its jobs (Women in Technology: The Facts, NCWIT, 2009)
  • Despite the increased opportunities and relative satisfaction among technical women, employment trends show that the percentages of women in specific technical fields have remained flat or declined since the dot com bust (Why Are Women Exiting IT? Carmen Nobel, Inforworld, 2007)
  • In 2008, women earned 57% of all bachelor's degrees, yet they only earned 18% of computer and information science bachelor's degree, down from 37% in 1985 (By the Numbers, NCWIT, 2009)
  • In the UK, 47% of the workforce is female, however, only 18% of the UK IT industry is female (Technology Insights, 2011)
  • Stereotypes, gender bias and the climate of science and engineering departments in colleges and universities continue to block women's participation and progress in science, technology, engineering and math (Why So Few, AAUW, 2010)
  • Only 1.3% of successful venture backed companies in a recent Dow Jones study had a female founder (Women at the Wheel, 2011)
  • A study in the UK showed that in 50% of mixed-gender state schools there is not a single girl taking science A-levels, whereas in single-sex schools, science subjects are almost equally taken by girls as by boys, suggesting that physics is uniquely stereotyped in many mixed schools as a boys' subject (Institute of Physics (IOP), UK)
  • Social e-commerce companies have a strong presence of women in the Silicon Valley: 80% have women founders or women CEOs (The New York Times, 2011)


Women in Trading & Hedge Funds

  • On the New York City trading floor, the representation of women remains at around 3% or 4% (Testosterone and high finance do not mix: so bring on the women, Tim Adams, 2011)
  • There are few to no women on any given trading desk and the women that are there are still primarily in sales roles (How the Trading Floor Really Works, Terri Duhon, 2012)
  • Women represent only 10-20% of new-hire programs at global banks for roles in sales and trading in financial markets (Man's World, Terri Duhon, 2012)
  • In 2009, a Hedge Fund Research organisation found that over the previous 9 years, hedge funds run by women had significantly outperformed those run by men. However, only 3% of approximately 9,000 US hedge funds have a woman in charge (Women in Fund Management, National Council for Research on Women, 2012)
  • The percentage of women in the 20 most prestigious U.S. business schools is below 30% (Teen Girls on Business: Are They Being Empowered, Simmons College School of Management, 2003)


Women in Luxury Brands

  • Men are currently the top earners and hold the majority of leadership positions in the luxury industry, but women are providing most of the revenue to fuel the industry (Adriana Estrada, Account Director, Siegel & Gale, New York Luxury Women to Watch, 2013)
  • Women in luxury make up a higher than average proportion of those working in business overall, but this percentage falls dramatically at higher levels of leadership (The Talent Agenda, Luxury Society Report)
  • The number of Mainland Chinese consumers traveling overseas has jumped from 53% in 2008, to 71% in 2012 (KPMG Global Reach of China Luxury, 2012)
  • There has been a surge in online shopping intentions, with 40% of respondents indicating they are interested in purchasing luxury goods on the internet, a substantial increase from 22% in 2011 (KPMG Global Reach of China Luxury, 2012)
  • According to some estimates, women now control $20 trillion in consumer spending worldwide—or about 65% of the world’s annual consumer spending today. The vast majority of new income growth over the next ten years is also expected to come from women (Luxury Market Report, Ultra Luxury Survey, Coldwell Banker Previews Report, Volume 2, 2012)
  • While there are some similarities in terms of motivation, women appear far more likely to buy luxury as a form of self-reward and pampering, whereas men are traditionally driven by status (KPMG Global Reach of China Luxury, 2012)
  • Women tend to make purchasing decisions around cosmetics, perfumes, spa treatments, clothes, footwear, bags and jewelry. Men on the other hand mostly decide on purchases related to alcohol, watches and automobiles. Joint decisions are made on hotels, resorts and restaurants (KPMG Global Reach of China Luxury, 2012)
  • In a five-year span, women’s global incomes have been estimated to grow from $13 trillion to $18 trillion.  To put that $5 trillion increase in perspective, it is nearly twice the growth in GDP expected from China and India combined (Luxury Market Report, Ultra Luxury Survey, Coldwell Banker Previews Report, Volume 2, 2012)
  • China accounted for 26% of total tax free shopping between April and November 2012. Tax Free Shopping by Chinese global shoppers rose by 58% in the third quarter of 2012 (July – September) in comparison to the same period in 2011 (KPMG Global Reach of China Luxury, 2012)


Women in Logistics and Transport

  • In Hong Kong, women make up just 22% of roles in the transportation, storage, postal and courier services industry (Women’s Commission Report, 2011)
  • The gap between male and female employee salaries in the logistics and transport sector continues to grow. Women were being paid 23% less than their male counterparts in 2010, compared to a 17% pay gap in 1984 (Purchasing Management Association news release, 2010)
  • Women make up just 6% of those employed in the transport sector in Hong Kong and 37% in the logistics sector. In senior management positions across these two sectors, women account for just 27% of roles (Hong Kong Women in Logistics and Transport (WiLAT) industry survey, 2013)
  • In a study of 1000 logistics and transportation professionals in Australia, half of whom were women, more than 75% of the women and 33% of the men believed that women were limited in growth opportunities through exclusions at both a professional and social level in their industry (The Unseen Gender in Transport and Logistics, Making Women Visible, Australia, 2009)
  • Less than 30% of logistics professionals think that schools and universities are supportive in promoting the industry to women (The Glass Ceiling for Women in Logistics, Europhia Consulting, 2009)
  • The annual logistics cost for a country is a significant proportion of their GDP, varying between 9% and 20%. For example, US (9%), Japan (11%), India (13%), Thailand (16%) and China (18%) (National Skill Development Report, India, 2009)
  • In a study of more than 80 female transport and logistics managers in the UK, career barriers identified included the men’s club (38%), prejudice of colleagues (27%), lack of career guidance (25%), and sex discrimination (16%) (Women’s Equality in the UK – A Health Check, April 2013)
  • The areas in which women executive managers are most commonly represented in the logistics and transport industry are also those areas least likely to have key manager status, for example, in public affairs, communications and human resources. In Australia, only 54% of reported female executives have key manager status, compared to 78% of reported male executives (Making Women Visible, Women in Supply Chain, Australia 2009)


Women in Private Equity

  • Women account for 13% of high level private equity roles in Asia, compared to 10.3% in North America, 9.9% in Europe and 9.8% in the rest of the world (Preqin in February 2013)
  • At the end of 2011, diverse and minority-owned private equity firms collectively managed only 0.24% of total private equity assets in the United States.  However, such firms significantly outperformed their peers in investment returns and returning capital to investors (PRNewswire, 2012)
  • In the venture capital and private equity field, women earn only 82.5 cents for every dollar men make (MBA Gender Pay Gap: An Industry Breakdown, Alison Damast, 2013)
  • Audur Capital, an Icelandic private equity fund wholly managed by women, is the only such fund to have made it though the crisis without a hitch (Women, Power and the Challenge of the Financial Crisis, Christine Lagarde, 2010)
  • Women-owned businesses account for only 3% of venture capital investments globally (World Bank 2012 World Development Report)
  • Several women describe incidents in which they were fired or involuntarily transferred to the non-deal roles after announcing they were pregnant. One women said, “I call each of my kids my ‘million dollar babies’ because of how much each one of them has cost me” (Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Women in the Boardroom, Paul Hastings, 2012)
  • “I think the main reason we’re seeing few women in the industry is because it is predominantly comprised of smaller partnerships that don’t necessarily have the same pressure to hire a diversified staff.  I think people like to hire people who are like themselves.  As long as you have white men at the top doing the hiring, they’re going to be inclined to hire white men.” (Sheryl Schwartz, Senior Managing Director, Perseus, 2011)


Women in Risk Management

  • “Women are naturally innovative, strategic thinkers. We have a natural ability to scenario plan and find creative solutions. That’s key to success in risk management.”  (Julie Pemberton, Director of Enterprise Risk and Insurance, Coinstar)
  • Among Fortune 500 companies that promoted women most often made 18%-69% more in profits than median companies in their industries (Pepperdine University)
  • Fortune 500 companies with three or more women in senior management roles ranked higher in organisational excellence than their competitor companies. As far as performance goes, those same companies outpaced the competition by 40% or more (Catalyst, 2009)


Women in Energy

  • Jobs in the renewable energy sector will expand from 6.5 million to 16 million by 2030 (International Renewable Energy Agency, 2014)
  • In the Top 20 companies in energy, only 9% are women (20First, 2014)
  • Of the 100 largest listed oil and gas companies in the world, only 11% of board positions are held by women (PwC)
  • In 2013, women accounted for just 6.5% of oil and gas roles in Asia compared to 10.2% in North America and 8.3% in Europe (Hays, 2013)
  • In 2011, 5.7% of fully qualified engineers in Hong Kong were women. (Census & Statistics Department)


Women in Insurance

  • ​In the U.S., women make up the majority – 55.7 per cent – of the insurance and finance industry labor force, but only 1.3 per cent of the CEOs (Catalyst)
  • Women hold 11.5 per cent of insurance company board positions on average: 14% of life insurance company boards and 10 per cent of nonlife insurance company boards. (GovernanceMetrics International)
  • In Hong Kong, women on average in the insurance industry make HK$4,000 less per month than their male counterparts (Census & Statistics Bureau)
  • “[The insurance] business is run differently if you have women around the decision-making table and that's why it's good to have diversity…. Different people approach things differently and provide alternative views – diverse boards help companies make better decisions, which affect the bottom line." (Inga Beale, CEO, Lloyds)
  • "Women bring the ability to change the strategic thinking that impacts the [insurance] industry.  The industry has always been known to be slow for change – instead of being forward-thinking and progressive, it tracks along at a slower pace than other industries, even though it’s huge and impacts the whole world.” (Sharon Emek, President and CEO of Work At Home Vintage Employees LLC)


Women in Hospitality

  • Nearly 60% of the workforce in the hospitality industry is female with only 6% representation at the boardroom (HR Magazine)
  • Women seemed to cluster at the lowest levels of management (only 7% of general managers, 33% of divisional directors and 20% of departmental managers were women (Ng and Pine)
  • Female managers were mainly in the functions of ‘personnel and training’ (64.6%) and ‘conference and banqueting’ (68.7%). Men on the other hand covered the areas of ‘property and security’ (100%), ‘food and beverage’ (90%), and ‘control and finance’ (75%) (Ng and Pine)
  • Out of 15 members on the Hong kong Hotels Associations Board, only one is female (HK Hotels Association Board)
  • "The are fantastic opportunities for talented women to play a wide variety of roles, from skilled technical through to leadership positions in both corporate operations and smaller enterprises. Yet women remain over-represented in unskilled and semi-skilled work and under-represented in managerial, creative and leadership roles – a problem due in part to the “traditionally macho” organisational culture as well as social reasons that may limit women’s participation and role in the workplace at large." (Professor Thomas Baum)


    Women in Real Estate

    • Out of 2,900 real estate professionals from top tier firms, women composed only 9% of the top ranks of CEO, CFO or COO (CREW, 2010)
    • Only 5 out of Bloomberg’s 157 companies in the REIT index are run by women (Bloomberg News, 2014).
    • Women account for 37% of real estate professionals in Hong Kong (Census & Statistics Bureau, 2014)


    Women in Investment Banking

    • Globally, women hold only 19% of senior level positions, 14% of board roles and compose only 2% of CEOs in the financial sector as a whole (Advancing Women in Financial Services, PwC)
    • Bloomberg report the top quarter of female bankers on Wall Street made US$50,000 less than their male counterparts (Bloomberg Business)


    Women in Sustainability

    • Women hold 3 out of 10 green jobs, signiificantly less than their share of all jobs (48%). Women in all major race and ethnic groups are underrepresented in green jobs compared to their share of the overall workforce (Insitute of Women Policy Research)
    • "Many of the jobs that are considered green are jobs that women haven't traditionally held. As a result, women miss out of earning good wages and benefits." (Women's Bureau, UN Department of Labor)

    Further Reading


    Women in Technology:



    Women in Trading & Hedge Funds:



    Women in Luxury Brands:


    Women in Logistics and Transport:

    Women in Private Equity:


    Women in Risk Management:


     Women in Energy:


    Women in Insurance:


    Women in Hospitality:


    Women in Real Estate:


    Women in Investment Banking:


    Women in Sustainability:


    Other Industries:

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