生かされていない資源/Untapped Talents







Untapped Talents

I always feel that promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion is a human rights issue and that itself is a sufficient reason to commit to it. However, we can also look at the effects of diversity on the organization itself.  

There is strong evidence from extant research that gender diversity in management has led to better organizational performance. Many studies conducted on a large number of firms in various sectors in both developing and developed countries have found that the inclusion of women on the board of directors contributed to better financial,  environmental, and corporate governance, improved quality of service provided, and innovation.

The university’s goal of 30% of women in university management and among teaching staff is consistent with the claim of the critical mass theory that only when there is a critical mass that women will be able to provide new perspectives, use their abilities, and skills, and as a result influence group performance. Empirically, many researchers have used “3” as the threshold, while others have found 31% - 40% to be the critical threshold.

Social practices and norms have rendered the lives, experiences, and opportunities of “men” and “women” very different. “Women" can have a positive impact on an organization because they have a different perspective and ability to manage and solve problems than those who have been at the center of the organization (viz. men). However, research has also shown that the contribution of women and other minorities will be limited unless there is a normative acceptance of diversity. It has been pointed out specifically that while there is substantial regulatory support for women in terms of parental and homecare leave policies in Japan, the male-centered work culture has severely compromised the benefits of gender diversity.  

Gender diversity is not yet a reality in Japan. The percentage of women in management in Japan is very low, and our university is no exception to this pattern. Affirmative action is one way to integrate more women and minorities, but to make them stay and fully tap their talents would require a long-term commitment to providing an environment where they can flourish.

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