Women Will Get It Done

Nearly 100 million adult women in the US (67% of the adult woman population) wear plus-sized clothing — a distinction the industry gives to garments above a size 14. The average American woman today is wearing between a size 16 and 18.

However, the spending on plus-size apparel represents only 17% of apparel sales in the United States.

Out of the $121 billion spent on the women’s apparel market only $21 billion is being spent on plus-sizes.

If plus-size women were to spend at the same rate as women in smaller sizes, the size of the overall apparel market would more than double and the plus-size market would expand by a factor of 10. [Dia & Co/Nadia Boujarwah]

Around 2006, executives at the Tokyo Medical University decided there were too many women applying for medical school so they programmed the computer that scored the entrance exam to subtract points from the test results of female applicants, year after year.

Then for whatever the reason, an independent committee was hired to review the school’s admission policies. News of the exam rigging triggered other allegations about admission policies.

Only 21% of doctors in Japan were women in 2016, the lowest among 36 countries surveyed by the OECD. But this is only part of the story; very few women are in elite professions and managerial positions in Japan. Japan ranked 114 out of 144 countries in terms of gender equality last year, according to a survey by the World Economic Forum. [WSJ, 8/8/18]

In the last decade, there has been little change in the number of women who have speaking roles in movies. The following are the numbers of women who had speaking roles by year: 2017 – 31.8%; 2016 – 31.5%; 2015 – 31.4%; 2014 – 28.1%; 2013- 29.2%; 2012 – 28.4%; 2011 – 31.2%; 2010 – 30.3%; 2009 – 32.8%; 2008 – 32.8%; 2007 – 29.9%.

78.7% of movie reviews of the top 300 films from 2015-2017 were written by men. 66% of film critics are white. [Annenberg Inclusion Initiative]

Boys are paid more than girls for household chores. Many parents are inadvertently perpetuating the wage gap for children when they set rates for these seemingly trivial household jobs. Boys aged 5 to 7 years make 50% more in weekly allowance than girls in that age group, according to a study of 10,000 users from BusyKid, a mobile app and web platform that allows kids to earn and track their allowance. The average boy makes $13.80 per week while the average girl makes $6.71. [MarketWatch, 8/2/18]

The Girl Scouts of the USA kicked off its summer recruiting season on Tuesday by announcing 30 new badges that aim to get girls aged five to 18 building robots, designing balloon-powered cars and mastering the college application process. The new badge programs are strong in STEM (science, technology, engineering or math) skills — key to closing the STEM gender gap, as women only make up 29 percent of the science and engineering workforce. And many address some of society’s most pressing issues at the moment, such as cybersecurity and environmental advocacy. [New York Post]

“Don’t underestimate the power of women connecting and supporting each other at work. As my experiences from being a rookie accountant to a managing director at an investment bank have taught me, conversations between women have massive benefits for the individual and the organization. When I graduated college in the 1970s, I believed that women would quickly achieve parity at all levels of professional life now that we had ‘arrived’ — I viewed the lack of women at the top as more of a ‘pipeline’ problem, not a cultural one. But the support I expected to find from female colleagues — the feeling of sisterhood in this mission — rarely survived first contact within the workplace.” [Ann McNulty, Harvard Business Review]

A U.N. Study says 99.3% of women in Egypt reported being sexually harassed.
[WSJ, 9/6/18]