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Advancing women's leadership in the charitable sector

The call in October by the EU Justice Commissioner for quotas for women on company boards has further fuelled a long-standing debate on gender-balanced boards.

While attention has been primarily focused on private sector companies in the UK, the Cabinet Office has established a target of 50% women for all new public appointments. Charity boards, particularly those of large charities, should expect the issue of gender-balanced boards to come to their sector too.

Women Count: Charity leaders 2012 indexed the participation of women in the largest charities in the UK and found that only 22% of charities in the study had gender-balanced boards of between 40%-60% men or women.