TALLINN – A recently published index of human development for the year 2003 shows that Estonia, despite occupying the 36th position, is second in the world in percentage of women specialists.
According to the report, 69 percent of specialists in different economic and public spheres are women, a fact that placed Estonia, along with Lithuania and Latvia, one of the top three countries out of 177.
In terms of female managers Estonia ranks 15th, as 27 percent of all the managers in the country are women, the Baltic News Service reported.
Ulle-Merika Papp, gender-equality adviser for the Social Affairs Ministry, said she saw nothing odd in these high positions.
"Many of our women have higher education, and in that sense they are all specialists," Papp said.
"Apparently teachers and kindergarten attendants are counted as specialists, according to the method of drawing up the report, while a cleaners' team leader with two subordinates is regarded as a manager," she explained.
Compared with the previous human development report (for 2002), Estonia climbed five places.
The country with the highest human development index is Norway, which took the place for the fourth year running, followed by Sweden and Australia.
Lithuania is 41st, Latvia 50th and Russia 57th.