Japan Data

Slow Increase in Female Reporters in Japan Brings Ratio Up to 22%

Politics Gender and Sex

Japan has few female politicians, and most journalists are male too.

A survey by the Japan Newspaper Publishers and Editors Association found that while the overall number of reporters belonging to member newspapers and news agencies is gradually declining, there has been a slight increase in female reporters. Even so, it has only been three years since the ratio of female reporters rose above 20% in 2018. Most recently in 2020, it stood at 22.2%. Although 35 years have passed since the Equal Employment Opportunity Law was implemented, there is still an undeniable visible imbalance.

Japan regularly appears toward the bottom of the Global Gender Gap Report, published by the World Economic Forum; in the latest March 2021 report, Japan ranked 120th out of 156 countries. Japan particularly lags in the political field, with a notably low ratio of female Diet members and cabinet ministers, and also in the economic field, where the gender wage gap and percentage of women in managerial positions are below the world average.

Women account for just 9.9% of lawmakers in the House of Representatives and 10.0% of cabinet ministers. The ratio of female reporters working for newspapers and news agencies, which cover this political world, is 22.2%. Meanwhile, Japan’s total population in January 2021 was 125.6 million, with women accounting for 52.6%, or 64.5 million.

(Translated from Japanese. Banner photo: A press conference at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications’ press club, with a notable presence of male reporters, on June 4, 2021 © Jiji)

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