Monday 24 August 2015 9:56 am

Fewer than one in five Silicon Roundabout tech companies are led by women

Fewer than one in five Silicon Roundabout bosses are women, putting London’s booming tech hub far behind FTSE 100 boards for female representation.

Some 18 per cent of directors of Silicon Roundabout firms are women, according to a study by consultancy firm Procorre, which found women are better represented at FTSE 100 companies than in the UK’s fastest-growing sector.

Women on FTSE boards have more than doubled in the past four years, with companies recently meeting their target of 25 per cent.

Tech is an area where women are underrepresented from the very start, with men dominating science, technology and engineering (STEM) subjects across universities, but this is especially true in leadership positions.

Across the sector women make up 27 per cent of the workforce, down from 33 per cent in 2002.

Read more: One thing Silicon Roundabout does better than Silicon Valley

Wiktor Podgorski, contracts and HR manager at Procorre, said although there was “undoubtedly a shortage” of women with tech degrees to go into the sector, this wasn’t the only explanation:

The gender gap in Silicon Roundabout cannot be explained by that alone.

Less than half of women graduating with STEM degrees go into this sector, compared to 68 per cent of men.

Podgorski suggested many women still consider the tech sector a “hostile” place to work:

Technology-based industries seem to be unable to attract the female talent available, and we have to look at the reasons why.

Self-imposed targets seem to be working in the FTSE 100 – they could also help the tech sector to raise its game.