More women are landing top jobs at the UK’s leading law firms than ever before, according to a study released yesterday.
The research, which was commissioned by The Lawyer magazine, showed that although men still outnumber females by four to one throughout the profession, ratios in the top ranks are slowly improving.
Nearly 20 per cent of partners in the top 100 firms are now female, the report said, a slight increase on the previous two years when the figure was around 19 per cent.
Pensions specialist Sacker & Partners was crowned as the top performing practice when it came to gender equality, with females accounting for nearly half of the partnership.
But some firms still trailed well behind the average, such as the Anglo-Scottish private equity boutique Dickson Minto, where just 5.9 per cent of partners are women – the lowest proportion of any firm in the survey.
And the top four firms – collectively known as the “magic circle” – were not as equal as the rest of the top 100, the report said. Just over 14 per cent of partners at these firms were female, compared to 20 per cent in the other 96.
The study shows a marked improvement in the profession over the last 16 years. In 1992, just 9.6 per cent of partners in the UK’s 10 largest legal firms were female. But that figure has risen by over 50 per cent to 15.9 per cent this year.