Women in sport: 'No real progress over sport gender gap'

Women's cricket
Women's cricket was held up as one of the positives by the study

"No real progress" is being made to address gender inequality in sport, says a body set up to get more women into leadership roles.

Women on Boardsexternal-link carried out a study in 2014 which looked at how many governing bodies had women among their leaders.

Its first report since that study has found the number of women in some sport organisations has actually fallen.

However it admitted there had been "variable progress within individual sports and at country level".

Women are under-represented on sport boards - and those playing sport are often underpaid when compared to men.

A BBC Sport study in 2014 found men received more prize money in 30% of sports.

Women on Boards says having more women in positions of power and helping to run sport will have a trickle down effect and help to close the gender gap.

UK Sport chief executive Liz Nicholl said there were other benefits to getting more women into leading roles in sport governance. She said: "When you inject female perspective into the sector, as with business, everything and everyone benefits."

Writing in the Women in Board report, she added: "Women's sport has come a long way in many countries. In the UK, governance of publicly funded sport organisations is relatively strong.

"We must continue to strive for more gender-balanced boards and diversity of thought in the governance of sport."

What did the report find?

  • No real progress made overall since last report in 2014 and "variable progress within individual sports and at country level"
  • Female participation on National Olympic Committees has actually fallen by 1% to 16.6%). NOCs were set a target of 20% in 2005
  • Only nine sports federations of the 28 Olympic sports have met the 20% target and five have no women administrators at all
  • The "billion dollar global sports industry has major issues to address in relation to governance and gender"
  • Football is making "slow progress"
  • National football associations "have a long way to go" - there are no women on the Scottish FA's main board, and only one on both the FA and FA of Wales boards
  • Women's cricket has made significant progress, with the England and Wales Cricket Board giving professional central contracts to 19 players in December 2015

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