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WOMEN MEMBERS OF THE IRISH CIVIL SERVICE

The Irish civil service is about 66 per cent women, down from 68 per cent in 2001. Most women are still concentrated in lower levels. Since 1986 the civil service has had an Equal Opportunities policy and recent reforms have facilitated a better work-life balance. However in 1999 a major survey by the Institute of Public Administration found, among other things, that women civil servants were considerably less satisfied with their jobs than men and are still less likely to reach high profile posts. In 2008 the Centre for Gender and Women's Studies at Trinity College Dublin produced a report on women and ambition in the Irish Civil Service. The research carried out by Valiulis, O'Donnell and Richmond showed that children, family and marital obligations have a greater, and more negative impact on women's than on men's careers progression, in spite of most men int eh civil service being married with children. The report included a number of recommendations to deal with the gender inequalities within the civil service including, better recorder keeping of gender disparities across departments, mentoring of women, paternity leave and research into clerical and junior grades in the civil service to ascertain whether women require more encouragement to aspire to promotion.

Table 1: Breakdown of Irish senior civil service, March 2010

Grade

women

men

% women

Secretary general

3

14

17.6

Assistant Secretary

18

129

12

Principal Officer

202

514

28

Assistant Principal Officer

774

1288

37.5

Administrative Officer

129

103

55.6

Higher Executive Officer

1796

1661..

51.9

Executive Officer

3617

1784..

66.9

Staff Officer

1287

343

78.9

Clerical Officer

8950

2628..

77

Total

16776..

8464..

66

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