Women in Scandinavia and Singapore Tend to Work Number of Hours They Want

According to a new Gallup poll that interviewed more than 187,000 adults worldwide, women in nearly every region of the world are less likely than men to work the number of hours they want. However, Singapore, Sweden, Finland and Denmark are among the top ten countries where women are most likely to be working the number of hours they want for an employer. 

Released yesterday was the study by Gallup on Wide Gender Divide in Employment in One-Fourth of Countries which explores gender inequality worldwide. Gallup’s Employed at Capacity for an Employer Index shows that women often trail men in global workplace, especially in Africa, Middle East and South America.

The top 10 countries where women are most likely to be working the number of hours they wanted to be working for an employer are Kuwait, Singapore, Sweden, Slovakia, Belgium, Finland, Denmark, Israel, Malta and Estonia.

The widest gaps are in Ecuador and Saudi Arabia, where women are 23 percent less likely than men to be employed at capacity.

One seeming surprise is Italy, where women trail men by 13 percentage points. It is the only western European country with a double-digit gap.

“The reasons for the large gaps are not clear but is probably strongly related to education and to local culture,” says co-author Jenny Marlar.

Interviews were conducted in 2011 with adults in 144 countries. The study excluded people who are self-employed.

The study has been done every year but the message remains the same.

“There are not as many good opportunities for women,” Marlar says.

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