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Dentsu Institute Compass Vol. 6
Gender Attitudes Survey

As a cornerstone of its activities addressing the theme “Quality of Society,” Dentsu Institute conducts quantitative surveys under the title “Dentsu Institute Compass” with the aim of grasping how the changes in people’s attitudes will shape society. With the approach of March 8, designated by the United Nations as International Women’s Day, for this, the 6th survey, we focused on people’s attitudes regarding gender in relation to areas such as society, economics, and the media. The survey covered a total of 3,000 men and women aged 18–79 from across Japan.

* The individual percentages in the graphs are calculated based on the actual numbers of respondents within the overall sample and have been rounded off. It should also be noted that as the sum totals of the individual percentages are calculated based on the actual numbers of respondents for that sum total within the overall sample as a whole and rounded off, these may not be consistent with simple sum totals calculated by adding the individual percentages together. (Example: In the case of the percentages for women in Figure 1 below, the simple sum total would be 25.8% + 49.1% = 74.9%, but when calculated based on the actual numbers of respondents for that sum total within the overall sample and rounded off, the sum total percentage is 75.0%.)

◎The survey report can be accessed here:
Dentsu Institute Compass Vol. 6: Gender Attitudes Survey.pdf

Findings

1.64.6% feel that “men receive more favorable treatment” in society.

When asked whether they felt that there is equality between men and women in society as a whole, 64.6% of all respondents felt that “men receive more favorable treatment.” It is also important to note that the percentage of women who responded that “men receive more favorable treatment” was 75.0%, 20.9 percentage points higher than that for men.

2.“Custom and convention” and “the workplace” were also contexts in which over half of the respondents felt that “men receive more favorable treatment.”

Where respondents were asked to give their opinion on whether there is equality between men and women for each of several different contexts, the contexts in which over half of the respondents felt that “men receive more favorable treatment” also included “custom and convention,” at 64.4%, and “the workplace,” at 59.6%.

3.There is a significant difference in opinion between men and women regarding gender equality in the context of “laws and systems.”

For some contexts there were significant differences in the percentages of men and women responding that “men receive more favorable treatment.” The largest such difference —at 27.9 percentage points—was regarding gender equality in the context of “laws and systems.”

4.78.4% feel that “Japan should make earnest efforts toward gender equality.”

When respondents were asked to give their opinion on the statement “Japan should make earnest efforts toward gender equality,” those responding “agree” or “agree somewhat” accounted for 78.4% of all respondents, with the individual percentages for men and women and the different age groups each exceeding 60%.

5.74.5% feel that “it is good to see increasing numbers of advertisements with characters that break away from stereotypical gender roles.”

When respondents were asked about their thoughts on an increase in advertisements showing characters that break away from stereotypical gender roles—such as men doing housework and looking after children, or women succeeding in managerial positions—74.5% of all respondents saw it as a positive development. This percentage was even higher among women, with over 80% supporting such a trend.

6.42.6% agree with “separate surnames for married couples,” 38.1% agree with “quota systems,” and 57.9% agree with “the sale of emergency contraceptives at pharmacies.”

Respondents were asked to give their opinion on certain items that have not yet been accepted in Japan. The percentages responding “agree” or “if I have to choose, I’d say agree” were 42.6% for “separate surnames for married couples,” 38.1% for “quota systems,” and 57.9% for “the sale of emergency contraceptives at pharmacies.”

7.It is expected to take around 25 years until “30% of companies’ managerial positions are occupied by women.”

The average prediction regarding how many years it will take from now until “30% of companies’ managerial positions are occupied by women” was 24.7 years. Similarly, respondents predict that it will take 27.9 years from now until “Japan has its first female prime minister," and 33.5 years until “50% of Diet members are women.”

Summary and Observations

The Global Gender Gap Index 2020 published by the World Economic Forum ranked Japan 121st of 153 countries. Of the four dimensions composing the index—economic participation and opportunity, political empowerment, educational attainment, and health and survival— Japan rates particularly poorly for economic participation and opportunity and political empowerment. This survey, the 6th of the Dentsu Institute Compass surveys, reveals that people in Japan are struck by such gender gaps firsthand in their daily lives.

On the other hand, the statement “Japan should make earnest efforts toward gender equality” is supported by an extremely high percentage of respondents—78.4% of all respondents, with the individual percentages for men and women and the different age groups each exceeding 60%. Likewise, already the majority—over 70% of respondents—see efforts by the media and businesses toward gender equality as positive developments. There is clearly a common appreciation of the need for gender equality in all areas of society and calls to establish a course to achieving it.

It should also be noted that to ensure that the respondents formed as accurate a small-scale representation of Japan as possible, they were allocated on the basis of Japan’s population composition ratios for gender and the different age groups. As the Population Census of Japan, which was referred to for those population composition ratios, divides gender into just two categories, men and women, there was no option but to do the same for this survey. In the future, we will strive to conduct accurate social surveys that at the same time preserve the gender diversity of respondents.

Methodology

Title: Dentsu Institute Compass Vol. 6: Gender Attitudes Survey
Survey date: February 5, 2021
Survey method: Online questionnaire
Survey area: Japan (countrywide)
Subjects: Total of 3,000 men and women aged 18–79 years
*Excluding high school students
Conducted by: Dentsu Macromill Insight, Inc.

Contact
Yamazaki, Nakagawa, and Magome, Dentsu Institute
Email:d-ii@dentsu.co.jp
URL: https://institute.dentsu.com/en/

Text by Sayuri Nakagawa
Photo by Morgane Le Breton on Unsplash



Sayuri Nakagawa

Producer, Dentsu Institute

Born in Nara Prefecture. Joined Dentsu Institute in February 2020. Coordinator for the World Values Survey and Values in a Crisis Survey. Sayuri’s research interests are in gender, well-being, and climate change. She has an MA in Promotional Media from Goldsmiths, University of London.

Born in Nara Prefecture. Joined Dentsu Institute in February 2020. Coordinator for the World Values Survey and Values in a Crisis Survey. Sayuri’s research interests are in gender, well-being, and climate change. She has an MA in Promotional Media from Goldsmiths, University of London.