Study finds that number of women managers, private entrepreneurs has increased in recent years, but men still predominate in most sectors of the economy; notable regional imbalances, especially in Kyiv

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Kyiv, 8 March 2021 – Ukraine ranks second in Europe in the share of women among managers and entrepreneurs (self-employed), the ratio of men to women among managers of legal entities and private entrepreneurs was 59.5 percent men to 40.5 percent women in 2020 – much higher than the world average.

These were among the findings of the report “Women and Men in Leadership Positions in Ukraine: 2017-2020,” which UNDP plans to release in April 2021.

The report, carried out by the Ukrainian Centre for Social Data (UCSD) on behalf of the United Nations Development Programme in Ukraine (UNDP) and with the support of the Swiss government, studied open data from Ukraine’s Unified State Register of Legal Entities, Individual Entrepreneurs and Public Associations, or USREOU.

UNDP Resident Representative in Ukraine Dafina Gercheva said advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment is a strong accelerator of development. It is central to UNDP’s mandate and integrated service offer to deliver on the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.

“The results of this report show a slight improvement towards gender equality in Ukraine, however much more is needed to ensure gender parity and women’s empowerment”, Gercheva said.

“In the last three years, the overall share of women in leadership positions in Ukraine has increased by nearly half a percentage point to 40.48 percent. This is much higher than the global average of 29 percent.”

Until recently, Ukraine has not been collecting gender-disaggregated statistics, making it difficult to fully assess the differences in the positions of men and women in the economic sphere in Ukraine, or in the management bodies of the country’s organizations and enterprises.

Nicole Ruder, Head of Cooperation, Embassy of Switzerland in Ukraine, said the data about women as entrepreneurs and organizational leaders in Ukraine was more than just a snapshot of the gender dimension in the private sector: “Used wisely, this research can be instrumental for building an appropriate support infrastructure for women entrepreneurship and the development of women's business associations,” Ruder said.

“It’s our hope that the results of this research will be useful for those actors and stakeholders, both governmental and non-governmental, who are working to empower women and to achieve full gender equality in Ukraine.”

The UCSD analysed USREOU data published on the Unified State Portal of Open Data by the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine. The dataset as of 7 August 2020 was used for the analysis – the most recent one available. The study is a follow-up to the first large-scale study “Women and Men in Leadership Positions in Ukraine,” which was conducted within the framework of the UNDP project “Strengthening Small and Medium Business Associations” in 2017.

The study found that:

  • The gender imbalance among managers and entrepreneurs in the capital Kyiv is much more pronounced compared to the national average. Kyiv is also in the top ten districts and cities with the lowest share of women among managers and private entrepreneurs
  • The directors and private entrepreneurs in most sectors of the economy are still predominately men
  • The share of women in general increased from 2017 to 2020 by 0.5 percentage points
  • Ukraine ranks second in Europe in the share of women among managers and entrepreneurs (self-employed)
  • Women predominate in “Accommodation and Food Service Activities”, “Public Administration and Defense”, “Human Health and Social Work Activities”, and predominate most in the “Education” and “Activities of Households as Employers” sectors.

The study "Women and Men in Management Positions in Ukraine: 2017-2020" was conducted by experts from the UCSD as part of the "Strengthening Business Associations of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises" project, which is implemented by UNDP in Ukraine in cooperation with the Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Agriculture of Ukraine and with the support of the government of Switzerland. UCSD experts developed unique interactive tools to analyze open USR data, which are available here.

Media Enquiries

Yuliia Samus, UNDP Communications Team Leader, yuliia.samus@undp.org, communications.ukraine@undp.org

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