On Friday, Germany released a newly approved quota that will force many of Germany’s largest companies to increase the number of women in their boardrooms to 30% next year. Germany currently has roughly 22% of boardroom seats filled by women, compared to just 15% in the boardrooms of United States companies listed on the S&P 1500. Though the quota is largely being lauded as a step in the right direction, it does have its dissenters. “Board quotas may seem like a convenient shortcut to workplace equality, but they are not — nor are they a long-term solution,” Carrie Lukas, managing director of the nonprofit Independent Women’s Forum, wrote in an op-ed published last December. “A distraction at best, they may undo women’s historic gains by suggesting that we cannot succeed on our own.” Those supporting the quota assert that as Europe is one of the world’s largest markets and its push to include women in more boardrooms will likely support similar changes in other markets around the globe.
Contributor: Phoebe Roe