‘Women at the Top’

Any fair-minded person who watched the two episodes of ‘Women at the Top’ on BBC2 – the second was shown last night – will surely have been appalled at how the estimable Hilary Devey – an entrepreneur (the founder of Pall-Ex) and a ‘dragon’ on Dragon’s Den – seemed to have been exposed only to propagandists for ‘improving’ gender diversity in the workplace generally, and in boardrooms in particular. But what else might we have expected from the institutionally left-wing BBC?

We’ve publicly challenged most of the people Hilary Devey met to provide evidence of a causal link between ‘improved’ gender diversity on boards and enhanced corporate performance. Collectively they’ve supplied us with nothing. The following appeared on the programme:

Sir Roger Carr (Chairman, Centrica)

Lord Davies, author of the infamous Davies report (2011)

‘Comrade’ Vince Cable, surely the most left-wing business minister on the planet

Helena Morrissey (30% club)

Erin Hurvenes, Jane Scott  (Professional Boards Forum)

Ceri Goddard (chief executive of the Fawcett Society, a militant feminist campaigning organisation)

Catalyst (an American campaigning organisation – some of their now-discredited claims of enhanced performance resulting from more women on boards were shown in the programme)

As well as the ‘usual suspects’ we were treated to some new propagandists. They included two women who I emailed earlier today to request their evidence of the missing link:

Avivah Wittenberg-Cox, who is French, Swiss and Canadian. Details here:


To contact Ms WC:


Kristin Skogen Lund, a businesswoman who manages to get by with just the one nationality, is Norwegian. She is President of the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise and can be contacted here:


Needless to say, there was no mention of the University of Michigan study which detailed the damage done by quotas for women on Norwegian boards. No mention either of the fact that many publicly-listed Norwegian companies delisted as a result of the quota legislation, and not one has since relisted.

As always with these public challenges, we will of course publish any evidence they have of the (causal) missing link. As always, don’t hold your breath…

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