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Where are the women in leadership in Australia?

Author: Leonie V. Still- The purpose of this paper is to review the current representational position of women in leadership in Australia, using management and board appointments as the relevant domains. The review reveals that despite 30 years of considerable legislative, policy and social change in the equity area, women have not attained leadership positions in any significant numbers in Australia. Their position women in other developed countries is also not at the cutting-edge. There is no one reason as to why this is so, although a lack of line management and profit centre experience is currently being touted as a major drawback. The paper suggests that other factors, such as Australias culture and lack of acceptance of women as leaders, women’s ways of communicating in the workplace, overall changes in the workplace, and generational change, also need discussion and debate. The paper recommends that governments, both Federal and State, re-engage in the equity area for further progress to take place in women’s representation in leadership. Otherwise, women’s leadership representation may continue to have low penetration in the workplace.


The article gives a current snapshot of women’s leadership status in Australia, a fact not well known or understood by women probably because of newer emphasis on work and family policies.


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