This survey is a pilot study of women's representation in the community and voluntary sector (CVS), which is traditionally a female-dominated workforce. Telephone interviews were conducted with leaders of 48 New Zealand CVS organisations, and data was collected on the proportions of women in voluntary, paid and leadership positions. Additional data is presented here on the types of boards organisations have (appointed, elected, etc.), the organisations' sectors, their sources and levels of funding, and the respondents' roles, employment status and qualifications.
The study found that women formed a majority in 60 percent of organisations' boards and 80 percent of leadership teams. 75-80 percent of paid staff in the CVS are estimated to be women. While female representation is therefore high, it is noticeably less at board level than at lower levels. Non-Pakeha women were found to be less represented at leadership level than Pakeha women. The characteristics of leadership roles in the CVS are discussed, which often require managers to hold a wide range of additional responsibilities beyond those of private or public sector managers.