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Women in the Boardroom

Progress inches forward at a snail’s pace

Global Boardroom Program

The Deloitte Global Boardroom Program’s Seventh Edition

The underrepresentation of women on boards remains a key area of focus for organisations globally, but overall progress remains slow and for women in leadership positions, even slower.

The Deloitte Global Boardroom Program’s Seventh Edition of the Women in the boardroom: A global perspective report includes updates from 72 countries on gender diversity in the boardroom, exploring insights on the political, social and legislative trends behind these numbers. While these private and public sector efforts demonstrate steps toward achieving parity, the pace of collective progress needs to pick up.

The global, regional and country analyses are based on a dataset of 10,493 companies in 51 counties – more than 176,340 directorships – spanning Asia Pacific, the Americas and EMEA.

To supplement this data, Deloitte compiled information on diversity quotas and other diversity initiatives. The report explores the efforts in 72 countries to promote boardroom gender diversity.

Global findings

The key findings from the global analysis of 10,493 companies.

Deloitte’s Global Boardroom Program

With over 5,000 participants across 43 countries, the Deloitte Global Boardroom Program brings together the knowledge and experience of Deloitte firms around the world, to address critical topics of universal interest to company boards and the C-suite. The programme’s mission is to promote dialogue among Deloitte professionals, companies and their boards and management, investors, the accounting profession, academia and government. In addition to the publication of thought-pieces on critical topics, the Deloitte Global Boardroom Program hosts a series of must-attend webinar discussions with eminent panellists to enable boards and management of global companies to challenge perceived wisdom.

One-on-one board perspectives

We explored the topic of women in the boardroom with leaders from across the world, in order to gain insight and advice on how organisations can accelerate gender parity and encourage diversity & inclusion.

Masahiko Uotani is President and CEO of Shiseido, a Japan–based beauty company founded in 1872. Mr. Uotani joined Shiseido in April 2014 as the first Shiseido president appointed from outside of the company in its 140-year history. Prior to joining Shiseido, Mr. Uotani had more than 30 years of experience in marketing and management at both Japanese and global FMCG companies. Among his various posts, he spent more than 15 years as CMO and CEO at Coca-Cola in Japan.

Mr. Uotani also serves in other roles, including president of Japan Cosmetic Industry Association, member of the Council for Gender Equality of Cabinet Office, chair of Keidanren1 Committee on Diversity & Inclusion, and advisory council of Columbia Business School Club of Japan. Mr. Uotani earned a bachelor’s degree in 1977 from Doshisha University in Kyoto and a Master of Business Administration degree in 1983 from Columbia Business School in New York City.

Download Masahiko’s perspective.

Eileen Murray is an accomplished executive with extensive knowledge in financial technology and corporate strategy from a career spanning more than 40 years. Ms. Murray most recently served as co-chief executive officer of Bridgewater Associates, LP.

Prior to joining Bridgewater, she was CEO for Investment Risk Management LLC and president and co-CEO of Duff Capital Advisors.

Ms. Murray launched her professional career in 1984 at Morgan Stanley, where she held several senior positions including Controller, Treasurer and Global Head of Technology and Operations, as well as chief operating officer for the firm’s Institutional Securities Group. From 2002 to 2005, she was head of Global Technology, Operations and Product Control at Credit Suisse and served on the firm’s management and executive board.

Ms. Murray is the chair of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), a self-regulating organisation for US financial securities firms. She is a non-executive director of HSBC Holdings Plc, Compass, Guardian Life Insurance Company of America and Atlas Crest Investment Corporation. She is also an advisor of Lukka, Inc., ConsenSys, Aquarian Holdings.

Download Eileen’s perspective.

Irene Dorner currently serves as the chair of the board of Taylor Wimpey plc and as an independent non-executive director of Rolls Royce Holdings plc, chair of Control Risks Limited, trustee of the South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership, honorary fellow of St. Anne’s College, Oxford and chair of Hampstead Theatre Board of Trustees.

She has strong leadership skills and commercial experience gained during her career spanning more than 30 years in banking and also through her various non-executive roles. Previously she had a long and distinguished career at HSBC, holding a number of senior positions, including CEO of HSBC Malaysia and CEO and president of HSBC in the United States.

She retired from HSBC at the end of 2014 and was a group managing director of HSBC Holdings and a member of the group management board. Previously, Irene was chair of Virgin Money (UK) plc prior to its acquisition in 2018 and was an independent non- executive director of AXA SA until May 2021.

Download Irene’s perspective.

Veronica Biggins leads Diversified Search Group’s board practice and is the managing partner of the firm’s Atlanta office. Biggins has over 15 years of experience as a senior partner in executive search, serving in leadership roles at both Hodge Partners and Heidrick & Struggles before joining DSG.

Biggins’ background includes 20 years of experience with NationsBank (now Bank of America), serving as Executive Vice President for Human Resources, making her one of the highest-ranking women in the banking industry. Biggins previously served as Assistant to the President of the United States and Director of Presidential Personnel under President William J. Clinton.

Biggins has also served as vice chairman of the U.S. Delegation to the United National Fourth World Conference on Women. When Biggins retired as chair of the Czech Slovak American Enterprise Fund, she received a “Points of Light Award” from President George W. Bush for her leadership of the Fund.

Biggins serves on the Southwest Airlines board of directors and recently retired from the board of directors of Avnet, Inc. Biggins has been recognised by the Board of Directors Network (BDN) for her advocacy of women on corporate boards; and is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors as one of the Top 100 Directors in the U.S.

Biggins holds a bachelor’s degree from Spelman College and a master’s degree from Georgia State University.

Download Veronica’s perspective.

Cristina Ungureanu was appointed governance manager at the Qatar Investment Authority (Doha, Qatar) in November 2021.

Previously, she was head of corporate governance at Eurizon Capital, the asset management company of Intesa Sanpaolo, a leading Italian banking group. Earlier, she worked in corporate and academic environments in South Africa, the United Kingdom and Italy, providing high-level corporate governance consulting and research to a diverse range of institutions.

Ungureanu is co-chair of the ICGN Global Governance Committee, a member of the European Corporate Governance Institute and a member of the Scientific Committee of the Italian Association of Non-executive Directors.

Download Cristina’s perspective.

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