Proportion of females in ICT stable but too low
According to a ABS Labour Force Survey, female participation in ICT has been fairly stable over the last few years, averaging 18 per cent of all ICT workers and 18 per cent of ICT professionals but the proportion has dropped from 25 per cent ten years ago and women are still greatly under-represented as a proportion of the workforce.
A fundamental reason for this is the drop in the proportion of females commencing and completing Bachelor Degree and High Award Information Technology courses over recent years, which is the formal entry requirement into the industry for many highly skilled technical roles. Non-technical roles filled by women have remained relatively static.
The proportion of females commencing Bachelor Degree and Higher Award in Information Technology courses declined over the years 2001 to 2004, from 26 per cent of ‘All Students’ in 2001 to 20 per cent in 2004. The proportion of females commencing Bachelor Degree and Higher Award Courses in Information Technology courses remained stable over the years 2004 to 2008 at approximately 20 per cent of All Students.
Females accounted for a consistent proportion of ‘All Student’ Completions over the years 2001 to 2004, averaging approximately 27 per cent. This proportion dropped in 2005 to 22 per cent prior to stabilising at approximately 20 per cent over the years 2006 to 2007.
A recent survey for ACS found:
- Almost a quarter (23.5%) of all ICT trade, technical and professional jobs are performed by women
- Almost 60% of ICT trainers, and almost 50% of graphic and web designers are women
- Less than 10% of telecommunications trade workers are women
For further information, please visit the ICT skills pages on the SkillsInfo website
The Australian Computer Society (ACS) has launched the 2010 statistical data about ICT economic and social trends, including the representation of women. See ACS
for all details.