Women at work - Under-used source of growth and competitiveness?

9 March 2016

Women’s participation in the EU labour markets has improved in the last decades; it is recognised that women have a right to work and to equal pay, and that this is beneficial for economy and society, and makes sense for employers, women themselves and their families. However, inequalities between the sexes stubbornly persist and a number of bottlenecks still hinder women’s participation. At this Policy Dialogue, organised on the occasion of the launch of the new International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) report, ‘Unlocking Female Employment potential in Europe – drivers and benefits’, which was published the previous day on International Women’s Day, a panel of experts discussed women participation in the labour market in Europe, and addressed questions such as: are there clear economic and societal benefits to having more women active in the labour market? Why does it make sense to initiate policies which enable more women to enter and remain in the workplace? What further policies and measures are needed to close the gender equality gap? And what conclusions can be derived from the finding that companies which have more women in senior positions are more profitable?