The Committee for Economic Development of Australia
The Committee for Economic Development of Australia
Primary Research
Area of focus: 
Unconscious Bias

A comprehensive policy perspective document prepared by an Australian non-government organisation, examining the gap between the genders in workforce participation and representation at senior levels.

In eight chapters, from a variety of authors, it discusses: the barriers and issues faced by women on the way to senior leadership; the argued benefits of prescriptive targets with accountability and reward frameworks, over legislated quotas; the financial impact of Australia's current welfare, tax and childcare arrangements for working mothers; issues of unconscious bias and the social construction of gender; career barriers specific to older women; and issues faced by the emerging generation of young women in the workforce.

Detailed case studies are included of a company which has instituted onsite childcare to support working parents, and of a delivery firm which has undertaken a nation-wide initiative to change the gender demographics of its frontline operations staff. Results are presented from a survey of the business community, including suggested actions for improving women's representation, and accounts of respondent’s positive and negative experiences within their work roles.