NEWS AND INSIGHTS UPDATE:
Forbes released its annual list of the 10 best countries for women last week, and the United States is noticeably missing from the list. According to Forbes, the 10 best countries for women in 2012 are:
- Iceland: Taking the top spot for the third year in a row, Iceland is “lauded for its women in political and economic positions of leadership.”
- Finland: Up from the third spot on the list in 2011, Finland’s new position at #2 matches its jump in the WEC Global Gender Gap this year.
- Norway: Moving down from the #2 position on the list of the best countries for women in 2011, Norway still ranks high as one of the Nordic countries (other than Denmark) that “have closed over 80% of the gender gap across health, education, political, and economic participation.”
- Sweden: More women have entered the workforce in Sweden thanks to business and government commitments to parental leave.
- Ireland: For two years, Ireland has ranked fifth in the list of the top countries for women. Ireland has made great strides in closing the gender gap since 2006 when the WEC began measuring the Global Gender Gap.
- New Zealand: Since 2006, New Zealand has appeared on the list of the top countries for women.
- Denmark: Another country that has kept its position in the list of the top countries for women for many years is Denmark, which has ranked eighth since 2008.
- The Philippines: The only country in Asia to close the gender gap in education and health in 2012 was The Philippines, which enabled the nation to earn a spot on the list of the top countries for women.
- Nicaragua: The number of women in parliament in Nicaragua has risen from 21% to 40% and the percentage of women in ministerial positions increased from 38% to 45%. Those leaps enabled Nicaragua to take the ninth spot on the list of top countries for women in 2012.
- Switzerland: For the third year, Switzerland appears on the top 10 list by consistently showing “gains in educational attainment, economic participation, and political empowerment.”