The UK is making greater progress on gender equality than all but four EU member states, according to the latest figures from the EIGE (European Institute for Gender Equality).
The UK places fifth on the EIGE's 2019 Gender Equality Index with a total of 72.2 points out of 100 – 4.8 points higher than the overall average across the EU.
Though the UK's total score looks impressive, we're actually progressing towards gender equality at a slower pace than other EU member states. The UK's position on the Gender Equality Index has dropped since 2005, when we placed fourth.
The UK scored especially highly for gender equality in terms of health and money, but relatively poorly when it came to power. This reflects the fact that there are still far too few women in positions of economic, social and political power.
In the UK, just 29% of board members at the largest publicly listed companies are female. Just 31% of board members at publicly owned broadcasting organisations are female, and just 27% of board members at research-funding organisations are female.
Meanwhile, just 29% of MPs and 31% of ministers are female, though this represents a rise from 19% and 26% in 2005.
Sweden, Denmark, France and Finland all ranked above the UK on the 2019 Gender Equality Index. Ireland placed seventh out of 28 EU member states, but unlike the UK, it's making faster progress on gender equality than the EU as a whole.
And the overall picture isn't quite as encouraging as it seems. The EIGE said in its accompanying report that "the European Union is moving towards gender equality at a snail's pace". Virginija Langbakk, the Institute's director, added: "We are moving in the right direction, but we are still far from the finish line."