Significant differences in the gender balance of students and faculty at the top business schools around the world are revealed in the latest report from 20-first, the leading international consultancy on gender balance devoted to moving beyond 20th century mindsets in management styles and marketing.
The new Gender Balance Scorecard focuses on the gender balance achieved at two levels: among MBA students and among faculty at the world’s leading business schools. It gives an overview of the top 100 business schools, based on the 2015 Financial Times ranking, and also takes an in-depth look at the top 12, or ‘top tier’.
Despite the fact that women are 60% of university graduates, the number falls precipitously at business schools. Female faculty are in even shorter supply. The learning tools used on MBA programs feature case studies dominated by men. The faculty are mostly men (tenured faculty even more so). And executive programs are even more male dominated than the MBA classes.
Here are some of the key findings of the report:
Better MBA Balance: Most of the Top 100 business schools show some improvement in the gender balance of the MBA student body since 2010.
Static Faculty Balance: Gender balance on the faculty, however, seems more challenging.
The Most Balanced: Star performing schools with female student numbers over 40% and female faculty numbers over 30% are: University of Hong Kong, Imperial College, Lancaster, Bath, Queens, Birmingham and Fudan business schools. None are in the FT’s “top 12 tier” of schools and two have a female Dean.
The Best are not Balanced re MBAs: 4 of the top 12 schools now have student participation at 40% and above: Harvard, Wharton, Stanford and University of California.
Least Balanced re Faculty: However, only 1 school in this group has female faculty numbers above 30% (IE Business school) and a third have less than 20%: INSEAD, Colombia Business School, University of Chicago Booth and CEIBS.
“Add all this up, and neither women nor men are getting much experience of gender balance at business schools,” says Lesley Simons, a consultant with 20-first and a thought leader on gender balance in business schools and the tertiary education sector.
Improved ratios don’t automatically make the cultures more gender bilingual, Simons notes.”You’d think business schools would be leading the way, not trailing their customers. It’s time for business schools to deliver on their purpose – access to the world’s best talent. All the talent.”