Switzerland falls to 13th in WEF gender gap ranking

Switzerland falls to 13th in WEF gender gap ranking

Switzerland has fallen out of the top 10 for the most gender-equal countries in the world, according to a new report by the World Economic Forum. While there have been some improvements in women’s access to Swiss healthcare, the alpine nation has fallen behind in other key categories.

Global Gender Gap Report for 2022

In the Global Gender Gap Report for 2022, the World Economic Forum (WEF) - the organisation based in Geneva, which holds an annual event in the ski resort of Davos - compared the opportunities for women and men in each country around the world. Nations were analysed on their progress towards gender equity in four categories:

  • Economic Participation and Opportunity
  • Educational Attainment
  • Health and Survival
  • Political Empowerment

In this year's report, special attention was given to how the COVID pandemic has helped or hindered progress towards equality and how the economic recovery after the pandemic can be used to make jobs, school systems and wider society more equal around the world.

World struggled to progress toward gender equality during COVID

In the report for 2022, the WEF said that progress towards gender equality had “stalled around the world.” The organisation predicted that it will take another 132 years to achieve gender parity, slightly better than what was forecast in 2020 but decades longer than the prediction made before COVID.

Saadia Zahidi, managing director at WEF, said that the rising cost of living, the pandemic and the climate crisis risk reversing the gains made towards gender equality in recent years. “Not only are millions of women and girls losing out on access and opportunity at present, this halt in progress towards parity is a catastrophe for the future of our economies, societies and communities. Accelerating parity must be a core part of the public and private agenda,” she argued.

Switzerland falls behind on women's equality

In 2022, Switzerland dropped out of the 10 best nations for gender equality, falling three places to 13th. According to the report, despite making improvements in how Swiss healthcare and hospitals treat women’s health, the country has stagnated on other issues.

According to the WEF, Switzerland has not made significant progress in advancing professional participation, economic opportunities, education and political emancipation for women. While the report said that the alpine nation had closed 79,5 percent of its gender gap so far - a score far higher than most nations around the world - there was still plenty more to do.

The 10 best nations for gender equality in 2022 revealed

Much like last year, the report in 2022 was dominated by Iceland, with the WEF noting that the country had closed more than 90 percent of its gender gap. In all, the top 10 countries for gender equality in the world in 2022 are: 

  1. Iceland
  2. Finland
  3. Norway
  4. New Zealand
  5. Sweden
  6. Rwanda
  7. Nicaragua
  8. Nambia
  9. Ireland
  10. Germany

For more information on methodology, and to see how other countries around the world ranked, check out the World Economic Forum’s website.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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