The former banker investigating ways to get more women executives appointed to Britain’s boardrooms will today give his strongest indication yet that quotas have been ruled out.
Lord Davies of Abersoch, who is carrying out a review for the Government, will say: “Quotas have proved successful in some countries but many of the women I have spoken with are against these. I have not ruled them out as a recommendation but at the moment I am not convinced they are right method to encourage progress.”
The peer, an ex-chief executive of Standard Chartered who served as Minister of State for Trade, Promotion and Investment under the previous Labour administration, was appointed in August by the Business Secretary, Vince Cable, to develop a strategy to increase the numbers of female directors of UK-listed companies. His report is expected in February.
Although controversial, the idea of quotas has proved successful – most notably for getting more women MPs elected by the Labour Party with its all-female shortlists. It also has support from campaign groups lobbying for gender equality – notably the Fawcett Society, which points to the dramatic effect quotas have had in Norway. The Scandinavian country was the first to demand boardroom quotas for women, and saw female representation soar from 6 per cent to 44 per cent between 2002 and 2008.
The Independent http://tinyurl.com/3a8wsbj