Bridging the talent gap in Denmark: Insights from female representation in STEM

Bridging the talent gap in Denmark: Insights from female representation in STEM

Gender diversity matters. Promoting parity in the workplace and beyond is no longer solely a moral imperative and a social necessity; it is a way to unlock better business performance. At the same time, women continue to be underrepresented in areas that increasingly shape society and face significant future talent shortages.

For more than ten years, McKinsey has sought to contribute to the global dialogue on gender diversity, and provide a fact base to support efforts by companies, governments, and social sector organizations to advance the cause of women in the workplace and beyond.

This report looks at gender diversity in a specific country context. Together with Innovation Fund Denmark, we have employed a novel approach of examining the career dynamics of Danish men and women at the level of the individual. We use STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) as a case study and track the career choices of selected cohorts from a dataset of 50,000 STEM graduates.

Our primary motivation for choosing STEM is the projected lack of analytical talent in combination with the sustained underrepresentation of women in these fields of study and work. Moreover, gender balance in STEM will ensure a democratic technological transformation, with solutions developed to cater to the needs of both genders.

The report synthesizes retention figures, wage statistics, promotion rates, and other data with qualitative insights gathered through focus groups, interviews, and the latest academic research. Through the lens of STEM, we distill broadly applicable insights and effective interventions.