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Twenty-four more women needed to meet 25% female board target

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A minimum of twenty-four more women must be appointed to reach the target of 25% female representation on FTSE 100 boards by 2015, according to the latest progress report by the Cranfield School of Management.

The report reviews the progress made towards the government-set target with a little over one year to go. Currently the proportion of women on boards within the FTSE 100 is 22.8% – while the figure stands at 17.4% in the FTSE 250.

The report also highlights an increase in the number of new directorships going to women, with 33.65% of available positions filled by female candidates this year. The number of women on boards has grown by 82% since the Lord Davies review into women on boards in 2011.

Professor Susan Vinnicombe, director of the Cranfield International Centre for Women Leaders, welcomed the progress made, especially the “landmark day” earlier this year when the last all-male board within the FTSE 100 appointed a female director.

“With only 28 of the FTSE 250 boards remaining all male, we are beginning to see what we hope is lasting change when it comes to gender diversity in Britain’s boardrooms,” she said.

Lord Davies, author of the original review almost four years ago, also welcomed the fact that female representation has nearly doubled since his original report.

“Although our target is in sight, we must keep up the momentum. Companies need to harness all available talent and those businesses with less than 25% of women on their board need to take action now,” he said.