Iva Nenadic, Alina Ostling

Public Service Media in Europe. Gender equality policies and the representation of women in decision-making roles

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Keywords: Public Service Media; Gender Equality; Vertical Segregation; Thresholds; Media Pluralism.

This paper draws on the 2016-data from the Media Pluralism Monitor. The Monitor is a tool for detecting risks to media pluralism that covers 28 member states of the European Union and two candidate countries (Montenegro and Turkey). In this paper, we analyse the availability of gender equality policies, including examples of good practices, and the proportion of women on the management boards of public service media (PSM). We also discuss an important methodological issue, which has been under-researched to date: thresholds for the representation of women in decision-making roles. Our findings show that in many of the PSMs in Europe women are under-represented at the managerial level, and many PSMs fail to address this vertical segregation through policy measures. In half of the 30 countries examined the share of women on PSM management boards is less than 30%. In 14 countries, PSMs also lack policies to promote gender equality. The 2016 Media Pluralism Monitor data also suggests that Europe has not seen any significant improvement in relation to the availability of gender equality policies and the representation of women on managerial levels in PSMs over time, since the European Institute for Gender Equality study (EIGE 2013). These findings suggest that Europe may be lacking a plurality of gender perspectives and diversity in public media organisations.

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