Ten years of efforts to increase the number of women in senior positions at Dutch companies have mostly failed, according to research by the Financieele Dagblad.
The number of women in boardroom jobs at the country’s top 25 blue-chip companies has risen from one to just four over the past seven years, while there has only been a marginal increase on supervisory boards, the paper says.
The joint government and employer foundation, Opportunity in Bedrijf , has also failed to improve the number of women in top jobs. The main progress made is that companies now recognise the business case for diversity, Jos Nijhuis, chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers, told the paper.
European Commissioner for Competition Neelie Kroes, herself a successful Dutch businesswoman, said she would like to see a code of conduct drawn up. Measures to boost the number of women in top functions could also be carried out through the Tabaksblat Committee’s rules on corporate governance, she said.
‘Companies should be forced to get a greater percentage of women to the top,’ she told the paper. ‘If they don’t, then they will have to explain why not.’
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