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Gender gap between men and women shrinking in the Netherlands

Inequality between men and women has decreased in the Netherlands, according to the Global Gender Gap Report 2012 just published by the World Economic Forum. This year the Netherlands ranks 11th overall out of 132 countries around the world in the report's Global Gender Gap Index.

The Index is a quantitative measure of the gap between men and women in terms of economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment, and is designed to be independent of the country's overall level of development.

The Netherlands rose four places since last year, and has improved its ranking two years in a row, mainly due to improvements in the number of women in ministerial positions and in the estimated earned income ratio. Nevertheless, the Netherlands ranks 16th in terms of political empowerment and just 24th in terms of economic participation and opportunity.

The gender gap is smallest in Iceland, followed by Finland, Norway, and Sweden, and is largest in Yemen, Pakistan, Chad, and Syria.

The report notes that while many countries have nearly closed the gender gap with respect to health and survival and educational attainment, the gap between men and women with respect to political empowerment and economic participation generally remains wide.

You can download a free copy of the full Global Gender Gap Report here.

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Carly Blair

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