SDG 5.5.2 – The Status of Workplace Gender Inclusion at Managerial Positions

“What gets measured gets managed”, (V. F. Ridgway). For Ireland’s labour force, what proportion of those in managerial positions are women? The UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5, gender empowerment, has two indicators for leadership in economic life, the first for team leadership/management overall, and the second for senior and middle management.


From Goal -> Target -> Indicator

Sustainable Development Goal 5 ↓

“Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”, the overall UN goal.

Target 5.5 ↓ 

“Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic and public life.” This articulates where we want to get to for more inclusive participation and workplaces.

Indicators 5.5.2

  • Proportion of women in managerial positions (%) IC_GEN_MGTL
  • Proportion of women in senior and middle management positions (%) IC_GEN_MGTN

On the official Government of Ireland SDG indicator website, neither of these two SDG 5.5.2 indicators are available. Clearly the second indicator represents more powerful positions. (August 2022)

Ireland’s Central Statistic Office continues to improve reporting, particular for IC_GEN_MGTL, the gender of Ireland’s managers. Below you’ll find information by county, industry and more on team leaders/managers for this TL indicator. (In April 2022 the most recent data available is 2017.)

Unfortunately for middle and senior management, there is no labour market wide data. Data is improving for TN. New CSO samples now cover large organizations (>250 people) who volunteered data. (Note: the CSO often call these ‘business’ samples which is incorrect and poor from a generally wonderful data source.)

SDG 5.5.2 IC_GEN_MGTL Ireland by County 2017

Sustainable Development Goal indicator 5.5.2 – IC_GEN_MGTL ‘Proportion of Women in Managerial Positions’ for Ireland, 2016 at Administrative County level. Source: Central Statistics Office, Ordnance Survey Ireland.

SDG 5.5.2 Ireland 2016 by Electoral Division


SDG 5.5.2 IC_GEN_MGTL Ireland 2017 versus 2012

Shockingly some regions saw a decrease in the proportion of female leaders, in the worst case down 17% from 2012, to an overall percentage of 30.2%. (Strangely this data does not include the 2016 information as above, also from the CSO.)


SDG 5.5.2 Ireland by the United Nations Stats

SDG 5.5.2 Ireland Compared by the UN Stats

Is it both puzzling and interesting to see that the UN has national statistics for Ireland on both IC_GEN_MGTL and IC_GEN_MGTN. (Should the senior / middle manager data be based on the CSO information referenced above, that data is inappropriate.)

Data on Global SDG Indicator Platform comes primarily from the United Nations Statistics Division’s Open SDG Data Hub with the most recent date noted as 2016.

The other core ‘mission metric’ for Gendelity, is the Gender Pay Gap in the private sector.