Iceland has topped the Global Gender Gap Index for the 10th year in a row. Vísir reported first. According to the Index, compiled by the World Economic Forum, Iceland has closed more than 85.8% of its overall gender gap, holding the top spot for the 10th consecutive year.
“[Iceland] has remained one of the fastest-improving countries in the world since 2006,” the World Economic Forum website states. The reality is not entirely positive, however. “Despite its top performance, the country has seen a slight regression on economic participation and opportunity after an increased gender gap in the number of women legislators, senior officials and managers,” the report continues.
Trailing Iceland on the list are Norway in second place and Sweden in third, with Finland, Nicaragua, Rwanda, New Zealand, Phillipines, Ireland, and Namibia filling out the top ten.
Prime Minister of Iceland Katrín Jakobsdóttir said Iceland’s ranking reflects the great work that has been done in the country to close the gender gap on the levels of government, academia, and grassroots. “We have to thank the Icelandic women’s movement greatly for clearing the way and pushing for changes in society,” she stated. “The main thing is to understand that gender equality has not been achieved and that it doesn’t happen by itself.” She pointed out that violence against women has not yet been uprooted in Iceland, likely in reference to accounts that have come forth under the banner of the #metoo movement. “We still have work to do and I look forward to leading this issue on behalf of the government in the next few years,” Katrín added.
In 2019, gender equality issues will be transferred from the agenda of the Ministry of Welfare to the Prime Minister’s Office in order to increase their weight and further enforce the integration of gender equality into government policy.