Direct democracy Switzerland: How To
Your browser is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this websites. Learn how to update your browser[Close]

Gender gap

Swiss still need more women managers

Jeannine Pilloud of the Swiss Federal Railways is one of Switzerland's top female managers (Keystone)

Jeannine Pilloud of the Swiss Federal Railways is one of Switzerland's top female managers


The gap between men and women may be slowly improving in Switzerland – it has moved up one place in the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s gender gap list – but there are still too few women in top management positions.

Iceland, Finland and Norway have the most gender equality, according to the WEF ranking of 136 nations, based on political participation, economic equality and rights like education and health. Yemen was at the bottom.

Switzerland moved up to ninth place from tenth last year, mainly as a result of increases in women’s salaries, the Geneva-based WEF said on Friday.

Overall the world’s gender gap narrowed slightly in 2013, the WEF said. The top ten rankings were dominated by northern European countries, but also included the Philippines, New Zealand and Nicaragua. Switzerland’s neighbours came further down the list, with Germany in 14th place, France in 45th and Italy in 71st place. The United states came in at 23rd.

The WEF also saw improvements in education for women and well as in their political participation in Switzerland.

But the country should not rest on its laurels, it warned, as it is lagging behind in terms of women in management positions.

“Only 43 per cent of management and top civil servant posts are filled by women,” WEF economist Margareta Drzeniek Hanouz told Swiss public radio.

Top ten gender gap countries

1. Iceland

2. Finland

3. Norway

4. Sweden

5. Philippines

6. Ireland

7. New Zealand

8. Denmark

9. Switzerland

10. Nicaragua and agencies


It is only permitted to use a hyperlink to specific SWI content on the website of the party requesting the content or the website of a third party. The framing of content from SWI is only allowed if it is unchanged, without advertising.

Articles can be copied and used if these guidelines are followed:

The article can only be used if it clearly mentions “[author],” For any further use, please send an email to: The editorial content on SWI adheres to the guidelines, rights and duties specified by the Swiss Press Council. If content not adhering to those outlined by the Press Council are found on third-party website displaying SWI content, SWI can demand that all SWI content be removed from the corresponding pages.