The Nordic Gender Equality Paradox. That is the new and quite interesting book by Nima Sanandaji. The main point is that there are plenty of Nordic women in politics, or on company boards, but few CEOs or senior managers. In fact the OECD country with the highest share of women as senior managers is the United States, coming in at 43 percent compared to 31 percent in the Nordics. More generally, countries with more equal gender norms do not have a higher share of women in senior management positions. Within Europe, Bulgaria does best and other than Cyprus, Denmark and Sweden do the worst in this regard.
"The Israeli public, and especially its policymakers, could learn much from Sanandaji’s analysis of the Nordic model. The main lesson is that further liberalization and smaller government is the most fruitful approach for social and economic progress in the 21st century, without exception."
"This book does a terrific job of dissecting why women in the world’s most gender-equal countries fail to live up to their potential. While it may seem that everything in the Nordic nations is stacked in favour of working women, Sanandaji explains the obstacles and incentives preventing women from reaching the top. From high tax wedges and the large welfare state, to the penalties on self-employment and the nationalisation of key female-led sectors, women in Nordic nations are encouraged to work hard, but not too hard. Setting conventional wisdom about the gender gap on its head, The Nordic Gender Equality Paradox is a lesson in market-oriented feminism."
"Many countries have pursued policies to promote opportunities for women by providing state-subsidised child care and through other interventions. Interestingly, this book shows that promoting a more free economy, does in fact, lead to more opportunities for those women who choose a career. It should be read by all those who wish to promote the cause of women."
Nordic societies seem to have it all: a historic tradition of women’s entrepreneurship. It therefore comes as a surprise that Nordic countries, in one international ranking after another, are shown to have few women among top-managers and business owners.
In The Nordic Gender Equality Paradox, Dr. Nima Sanandaji shows that the apparent paradox has a simple answer: Nordic welfare states are – unintentionally – holding women back.
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