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Most Gender Equality in Iceland

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Most Gender Equality in Iceland

Culture Night 2015.

Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

Nowhere in the world is there more gender equality than in Iceland, according to the global gender gap index, compiled by the World Economic Forum. It’s the result of the analysis of more than a dozen datasets regarding economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, health and survival and political empowerment. The report covers 145 countries.

Iceland tops the list for the seventh year in a row, according to RÚV. Norway ranks second, Finland third and Sweden fourth. Denmark, though, has dropped to 14th place this year.

The number of women working outside the home has increased by 250 million in the past decade. In 98 countries, Iceland among them, more women than men attend university and graduate. Still, the increased education among women is only partially reflected in increased wages. For every EUR 100 a man earns in Iceland, a woman earns EUR 86. Icelandic women make up 64 percent of university graduates.

The Nordic Countries’ strong performance, year after year, is attributed to their family policies, according to Saadia Zahiki, the report’s main author. She claims children receive the best support in these countries, and legislation regarding paternity, maternity and maternity, or parental, leave is superior to that of other countries.

The United States ranks 28th on the list, Canada 30th. At the very bottom is Yemen, with Pakistan and Syria in second and third places from the bottom. The report predicts the economic gap between men and women will not close until 2133.

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