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In December 2013 Society Integration Foundation has started the implementation of project "GENDER EQUALITY in economic decision making- TOOL to promote economic competitiveness AND equality VALUE" supported within the section "Gender equality" of the EU employment and social solidarity programme "PROGRESS 2007- 2013".


The Ministry of Welfare of Latvia as the national authority in charge of gender equality in cooperation with Society Integration Foundation and stakeholders strongly believe that significant actions needs to be taken to reach the gender equality in economic decision making. Despite the fact that Latvia perform good figures regarding women in economic decision making and Latvia has a very good situation against the background of other EU countries, i.e. 26% of women on largest listed company boards, however, this cannot be deemed to be the gender balance or reached gender equality. Women in Latvia compare to men are well and better educated and consist 68% of all graduate students of the High schools, including business schools. There is still remain an answer - if there are so educated women why there are still too few women in economic decision making in the top positions of the companies management?

Since the government of Latvia beside eight more European Union (EU) member states do not willingly support the adoption of legally binding provisions for women and men on company boards, introduced and discussed in the February, 2012 in the European Commission Employment & Social Affairs Council, but at the same time believe that fair chances and equal opportunities for women in economic decision making should and must be promoted, the project will contribute to reach this goal with "soft" instruments.

Project objective and main fields of activities:

In order to ensure achievement of the project objective "To promote balanced representation of women and men in economic decision making in Latvia", the following five (5) directions of actions were set out:

  1. Overall project management;
  2. Analyses of current situation of the gender equality in Latvia;
  3. To mainstream gender equality aspects into "Sustainability index" of the private sector companies;
  4. The exchange of experience and knowledge on opportunities of the presence of women in the different decision making levels of companies;
  5. Awareness rising of general public on gender equality issue.

Expected results:

  • To ensure achievement of the project objective, the following results will be reached:
  • The overall situation on the gender equality issues and in economic decision-making in Latvia and good practices implemented are identified and analysed;
  • Gender equality aspects mainstreamed into "Sustainability index" of Latvian biggest companies;
  • Raised awareness of employers of leading companies on correlation between gender equality and company performance;
  • Award for most equal company and special award for most successful company leading by woman distributed;
  • Raised awareness of students and academic staff in addressing gender equality aspects in decision-making process;
  • Discussions initiated on importance of balanced participation of women and men in economic decision-making on national, Baltic and European level;
  • Exchanging experiences and good practices, promoting networking among key actors at national and European level facilitate;
  • Public awareness of gender equality issues is raised.

Within this call for proposals EC has supported all together 12 projects to be implemented during year 2014 in Check Republic, Iceland, Italy, Lithuania, Ireland, Bulgaria, Finland, Poland, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia and Latvia. During the project lifetime the exchange of ideas, information and results with other projects in Europe will be strongly encouraged.

Implementation period and funding:

Project implementation period is one year. Total cost of the project is estimated at EUR 230 090, 16 comprising 80 % of Commission funding and 20% of national co-funding.


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This information has been published within the PROGRESS Programme of the European Union project "Gender equality in economic decision making- tool to promote economic competitiveness and equality value", No. JUST/2012/PROG/AG/4127/GE. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of Society Integration foundation and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission."