Singapore’s Gender Diversity Inches Up

WOMEN’S CORPORATE BOARD participation in Singapore is slowly but steadily increasing, according to the 2013 Singapore Board Diversity Report from the National University of Singapore’s Centre for Governance, Institutions and Organisations (CGIO).
Singapore’s Gender Diversity Inches Up

In 2012, women comprised 7.9 percent of all board members for firms listed on the Singapore Exchange, up from 7.3 percent in 2011 and 6.9 percent in 2010.

However, Singapore still ranked behind other countries in the region, including Indonesia, where 11.6 percent of board members were women; Hong Kong, where 9.4 percent were women; New Zealand, 9.1 percent; China, 9 percent; and Malaysia, 8.7 percent. Six in ten Singaporean boards were still allmale. The countries with worse representation included India (5.8 percent), South Korea (2.4 percent), and Japan (2.0 percent).

The report also found that the presence of one woman on the board improved a company’s return on equity and return on assets by small but statistically significant amounts (.33 percent and .32 percent, respectively). Companies with women board members also scored higher in corporate governance.

The report’s authors include Marleen Dieleman, Meijun Qian, and Muhammad Ibrahim.