Are Corporates anti-women?

A friend’s company recently published this article on Harvard Business Review. Here’s an excerpt –

New research by our firm, Catalyst, shows that among graduates of elite MBA programs around the world—the high potentials on whom companies are counting to navigate the turbulent global economy over the next decade—women continue to lag men at every single career stage, right from their first professional jobs. Reports of progress in advancement, compensation, and career satisfaction are at best overstated, at worst just plain wrong.

The report stated that there is not much correlation between child bearing and career growth for women, there was not any significant indicator as to why women are at a junior position v/s men on the same career path. The only indicator which showed bias was the entry roles offered to women, where they had to prove their worth to the organization before being taken for higher roles (10% women were accepted at higher level roles v/s 19% men were accepted at higher level roles).

To know more of the scenarios that is in corporate India, I did some secondary research (read googling) and came with some interesting articles. This one says that the condition of women in India Inc. is no different, some excerpts –

Surprise? Not really, as experts say that a bare three per cent women occupy senior positions in private companies across India. And most of the companies only have five to six per cent women employees. What is more, a national daily quoted Pallavi Jha, former chairperson of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) (Maharashtra Region) as saying; “A study on women graduates of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, showed that more than 70 per cent do not pursue a career.”

A study conducted in 2007 revealed that this discrepancy is not only observed in the lower echelons of company management, but even more so at senior management levels.

Out of the 9,000 people on boards of the BSE-listed companies, only five are women. Indian companies seriously lack women in senior management roles, HR consultants say.

If one has to change this, then who does the responsibility lie with? The women to achieve more? The men to give women a fair chance? The organizations to level the odds for both the genders? The education system? Or the society to change their mindset?