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Minister McGurk and Minister Murray
  • State Government working with sports industry to create more leadership opportunities for women
  • Women are significantly underrepresented on sports boards and leadership teams
  • State Government sports funding will be linked to sports' performance in achieving new national women in leadership targets

The funding sports receive from the State Government will soon be linked to their performance in achieving gender balance in leadership — with a three-year transition period now underway to assist sports to achieve the targets.

Women's sport has undergone a rapid transformation in Australia in recent years, with participation, commercial interest and mainstream television coverage in traditionally male-dominated sports increasing significantly.

However, these achievements have not been reflected at the highest decision-making levels of Australian sport, with sports board and executive management positions continuing to be largely male-dominated.

In 2018, new national targets were set to bring female representation on State Sporting Association boards up to 50 per cent — a move strongly supported by the WA Government.

Currently only 28 of the 68 Western Australian State Sporting Associations (41 per cent) meet the 50 per cent target, with 14 sports (21 per cent) having a quarter or less women on their boards or committees.

The drive for gender balance will complement the significant growth in opportunities for women's sport, ensuring participation and interest is matched by opportunities for women to become industry leaders.

The State Government has worked with KPMG to produce Case for Change, a project which highlights the many organisational benefits that more diverse leadership would provide to sports challenged by the changing environment.

The sports industry's response to the new targets has been overwhelmingly positive, with many leaders in the sector having long campaigned for proactive measures to promote greater opportunities for women.

The State Government is rolling out a range of initiatives to assist sports to increase female representation in their leadership teams.


Page reviewed 27 February 2023