It’s International Women’s Month and there is no better time to be a woman than today. Women of today experience the most rights, financial independence, and social freedom. That said, does this stay true during a pandemic in the Philippines vis-a-vis its relatively conservative Asian neighbors?
iPrice Group studied a young industry like e-commerce, which its workforce may consist of mostly the younger generation, to determine how the Philippines is fairing in gender diversity compared to 5 countries in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong.
The PH’s Rank Dropped; More Women Than Men Left Jobs During the Pandemic
Out of the 7 countries listed, the Philippines is surprisingly smack in the middle. It’s the 4th country with the most women in power, with 39% of women holding a high-level role in e-commerce. However, in iPrice’s 2018 study, the Philippines ranked number two. Likewise, Nikkei Asia also reported that the Philippines leads Asia with the most ratio of women in senior managerial roles in 2019.
Thus, why did the Philippines fall behind some of its Asian peers in this 2021 study?
According to NPR, there are much more women leaving the workforce than men during the pandemic. There may still be a distinction of gender roles within the household due to the many years of women’s unconscious bias to be family-oriented. That said, Filipinas may be taking care of their children, who are coerced to be educated at home.
This hypothesis makes the most sense as the top three countries, Hong Kong, Vietnam, and Thailand, didn’t undergo as stringent lockdowns as the other listed Asian countries.
There Are More Women in C-Level Roles Today Than Three Years Ago
Nonetheless, gender diversity is still a milestone to be celebrated and continued for the years to come. Looking at the overall statistics of the Asian countries, the outlook is rosy. 40% of these women hold a position of power, which is almost equal to men. As mentioned, the pandemic may still have influenced these numbers to be lower.
Moreover, there are even more women holding Senior Vice President roles (44%). In terms of C-level positions, much improvement could be made. Only 31% of these women hold a c-level role in e-commerce companies. However, this is still a big improvement from iPrice’s 2018 study, when only 17.5% of women held these roles.
Overall, gender diversity has come a long way. Women were just given the right to vote about a hundred years ago, so to find more of them in high-level positions in a relatively conservative region such as Asia is a huge milestone. However, with the pandemic in the picture, we will see how this may pan out for many women.