Maps show the countries with the most equal outlook on gender

Nordic countries have the most progressive outlook on gender relations, out-performing the rest of the world

Alexandra Sims
Thursday 12 November 2015 18:30
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Middle Eastern states were the most conservative
Middle Eastern states were the most conservative

Differences in gender equality are still stark throughout much of the world, and now public opinion data can reveal which countries have the most progressive outlook on gender relations and which fall far behind.

A global survey, conducted by YouGov, asked 24 countries to answer questions about gender equality giving a gender equality attitude ranking.

Participants were asked 14 questions, 10 of which required people to agree or disagree with statements about gender relations, including: "It is unattractive for women to express strong opinions", "A wife's first role is to look after her husband" and "creating more opportunities for women should be one of the world's top concerns".

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The map above displays which countries have the most progressive gender outlooks and those where tensions within gender relations are most acute.

Nordic countries have the most progressive outlook on gender relations, out-performing the rest of the world, particularly the Middle East.

Sweden not only has the highest gender equality ranking, but there is also virtually no difference between the views of men and women.

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The outcome reflects data collated by the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index, measuring gender inequalities in health, education, economics and politics. It finds Nordic countries have the highest levels of equality world-wide.

Middle Eastern states were found to be the most conservative and for three of the survey's statements (“a women’s first role is to look after her husband”, “a woman’s place is in the home” and “it is unattractive for women to express strong opinions in public”) there was more than a 60 point difference between the Middle East average and the global average.

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A country's wealth had a significant impact on its attitude to gender, with richer countries generally holding more progressive views.

The US was a notable exception,however, scoring only five points higher in progressiveness than China, despite having seven times as much wealth per person.

Britain has the highest level of gender inequality in any of the developed countries surveyed, according to the Global Gender Gap Index, however it still holds more progressive attitudes.

Britain had higher ranking attitudes than the global average in a number of key areas including statements such as “men and women are equal” and “Women and men should generally get equal pay”

On the attitude that creating more opportunities for women should be "one of the world’s top concerns", however, Britain only scores higher than Morocco, Jordan, Thailand and Algeria.

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