Boardroom Diversity Index

The WOB Boardroom Diversity Index (BDI) was launched on International Women's Day in March 2010. It is the most comprehensive publicly available data measuring female participation on the boards of Australian organisations in the sectors listed below. The index components were selected because of their economic and social importance. The scarcity of women directors is a key aspect of the wider economic disadvantage experienced by women in the Australian workforce. In publishing the Boardroom Diversity Index, Women on Boards is seeking to alter the perspective of 'it just takes time' and provide practical strategies and resources for willing chairmen and their advisers to improve female participation on boards.








ASX100 25.3 23.5 NA NA NA NA
ASX200 23.0 19.9 15.8 13.9 10.9 8.7
ASX201-300 15.9 13.4 NA 7.6 NA NA
ASX300 20.6 18.2 NA NA NA NA
Affordable Housing NA 39.6 NA NA NA NA
Charities (NSW) NA 39.6 NA NA NA NA
Cooperative Research Centres 25.5 24.2 17.1 18.2 18.3 17.3
Credit Unions / Mutual Banks / Building Societies 26.0 23.4 20.9 21.2 18.4 21.0
Government Federal (top by remuneration) 39.1 38.5 39.3 35.9 31.0 30.4
Government Federal (portfolio boards) 40.5 39.7 41.7 38.4 NA NA
NSW: Government-owned Corporations 32.4 31.4 24.2 20.7 23.7 24.4
Qld: Government-owned Corporations 21.8 21.8 35.4 38.4 36.0 32.0
SA: Government -owned Corporations 48.8 48.8 48.9 49.1 47.4 45.3
Tas: Government-owned Corporations 28.6 28.6 25.6 25.0 28.1 NA
Vic: Government-owned Corporations 30.3* 35.6 32.8 33.0 40.0 NA
WA: Government-owned Corporations 29.7 25.9 29.1 23.1 27.8 NA
Health Funds 26.4 24.7 24.2 24.1 27.8 NA
Health Boards NA 53.1 NA NA NA NA
Medical Colleges 20.3 30.4 NA NA NA NA
Primary Health Networks (formerly Medicare Locals) 39.2 41.7 NA NA NA NA
National Sporting Organisations 34.4 30.5 24.4 23.4 22.7 26.5
RDA Committees 36.9 NA NA NA NA NA
Research and Development Corporations 22.0 21.7 23.7 21.1 22.5 22.4
State Health Services 43.0 41.0 NA NA NA NA
Superannuation Trusts 29.6 26.6 20.9 21.8 20.4 19.4
University Bodies 37.4 34.7 NA NA NA NA


Affordable Housing Bodies

Board composition of housing bodies within the community housing sector, not-for-profit providers of housing for people on low to moderate incomes. Gathered from lists of housing bodies from the Community Housing Association of Australia and State based Housing Associations where available.

ASX 100

Comprises the 100 largest stocks by market capitalisation in Australia.

ASX 200

Comprises the 200 largest stocks by market capitalisation in Australia.

ASX 201-300

Comprises those ASX 300 stocks ranked from 201-300.

ASX 300

Comprises the 300 largest stocks by market capitalisation in Australia.

BDI Summaries

Yearly summaries of the BDI.


Data detailing a random sample of 600 NSW based charities. Research and report conducted by economics students from the Australian National University completing an internship program at Women on Boards.

Cooperative Research Centres

CRCs are funded jointly by the Federal Government, industry and other commercial and research partners. A CRC is an incorporated or unincorporated organisation, formed through collaborative partnerships between publicly funded researchers and end users. CRCs must comprise at least one Australian end-user (either from the private, public or community sector) and one Australian higher education institution (or research institute affiliated with a university). Improvements in this sector may also have been due to increases in the change in composition of the sector focuses of CRCs.

Credit Unions / Mutual Banks / Building Societies

Membership composition of credit unions, mutual banks and building societies, an important subsector within the finance industry. Historically relatively slow progress in gender diversity though this is improving.

Government-owned Corporations

Corporations in which the government has at least a majority share. Progress has varied substantially from State to State with particularly good performance from South Australia and bad performances from Queensland and Tasmania.

Government Federal

Boards of Federal government agencies, board gender diversity has been good in recent years.

Health Funds

Providers of health insurance. Board gender diversity progress has been slow in this sector.

Health Boards

Health boards regulated by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency, board gender diversity very good.

Medical Colleges

Professional organisations for those in the medical profession, board gender diversity has seen a decline recently.

National Sporting Organisations

National organisations involved in the promotion of particular sports. Gender diversity in this sector has been improving relatively quickly particularly in recent years.

Primary Health Networks (formerly Medicare Locals)

Formerly Medicare Locals, Primary Health Networks are involved in the provision of health services in their local area. Unfortunately the amalgamation of Medicare Locals into Primary Health Networks has led to a decrease in board gender diversity within the sector.

RDA Committees

Regional Development Australia (RDA) is a nation-wide program working to support regional development and consisting of a network of 55 regional committees. Board gender diversity in this sector is broadly poor, with over half of committees having less than 40% female directors and some committees with below 20% female directors such as RDA NSW Southern Inland and RDA WA Peel.

Research and Development Corporations

Corporations for the purposes of rural research and development, a mixture of industry funded corporations with government support and statutory corporations. Board gender diversity is poor in this sector and only slowly improving with occasional reversals.

State Health Services

Providers of health services on the State level, board gender diversity has been good in recent years.

Superannuation Trusts

Managers of superannuation funds, Women on Boards has been active in the question female participation of these boards as 40% of super members are female. This sector appears to be steadily improving its board gender board diversity.

University Bodies

The governing bodies of Universities, members usually elected from staff and alumni though some appointed by the government. Board gender diversity has been good and improving in recent years.