Women in Top Management: What We Knowthus

In: Business and Management

Submitted By HarvardGirl
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Womenin Top Management: WhatWeKnowThus
Perhaps the most widely quoted source of data on women in executive rank is the Catalyst bi-annual
Census of Women Corporate Officers and Top
Earners. Catalyst collects data on women who are corporate officers in the Fortune 500 companies from publicly available company reports to the
Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and to stockholders, and then asks each company to verify these data. As part of the verification process, companies can add female corporate officers that do not appear in official company filings or annual reports to stockholders.3 Catalyst also asks the companies to verify the functional area responsibilities of the executives. Based on these data, Catalyst reports the number and percentage of officers who are women.4
Academic studies also have examined the representation of women in top management, often focusing on Fortune 500 companies (for a review, see Powell 1999). The data in the Catalyst reports and other studies show a growing proportion of women in top management in recent years. Most estimates of women in top management in the
1970s through 1990 ranged from zero to 3 percent
(Powell 1999). The percentages reported by Catalyst for the Fortune 500 companies in the second half of the 1990s were much higher: 8.8 percent in
1995, 11.2 percent in 1998, 12.5 percent in 2000, and 15.7 percent in 2002 (Catalyst 1998, 2002).
Hillman, et al. (2005) also found that 7.34 percent of top executives in the largest 1,000 companies during the period 1990-2003 were women.
Finally, Cappelli and Hamori (2004) found that
11 percent of top executives in the Fortune 100 in
2001 were women.
Despite this upward trend, the data show less representation of women among executives most directly in line to be CEO. Catalyst reports that in
2002 women held 9.9 percent of line…...

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