40:40 Vision

Working towards gender balanced executive teams by 2030

40:40 Vision is an initiative led by HESTA, supported by industry partners, to ensure diversity in executive leadership in ASX 200 companies. Supporting partners include Chief Executive Women, the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI), Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA), and the 30% Club.



40:40 Vision is an investor-led initiative to achieve gender balance in executive leadership across all ASX200 companies by 2030.


40:40 Vision seeks to move beyond tokenism to achieve this through business-oriented structural transformation, encouraging companies to set and publicly report on progress against composition targets for executive leadership (CEO-1).


40:40 stands for:

  • 40% women
  • 40% men
  • 20% any gender.


This initiative is led by investors and key stakeholders in the diversity and inclusion space.


We are looking for structural change, by encouraging ASX200 companies to set medium and long-term targets for their executive leadership teams, with a pledge to achieve gender balance by 2030.


Research[1] shows that organisations that set quantitative composition targets for executive leadership are more likely to achieve balanced representation of men and women at this level.


We recognise the complexity and differences in organisational structure among ASX200 companies. Therefore, 40:40 Vision is designed to achieve one common ambitious outcome without being overly prescriptive in its approach to diversity and inclusion. 


[1] https://www.asx.com.au/documents/asx-compliance/asx-corp-governance-kpmg-diversity-report.pdf


Having women in leadership positions improves performance


WGEA and the Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC) released findings[1] on 19 June 2020 that an increase in the share of female ‘top-tier’ managers by 10 percentage points or more led to a 6.6% increase in the market value of Australian ASX-listed companies, worth the equivalent of AUD$104.7 million.


However, research also shows that with current growth patterns, we cannot expect to see equal representation of women and men at CEO level until 2100[2].  Similar projections apply for executive leadership (CEO-1).


[1] https://www.wgea.gov.au/newsroom/media-releases/more-women-at-the-top-proves-better-for-business

[2] https://bcec.edu.au/publications/gender-equity-insig2hts-2019-breaking-through-the-glass-ceiling


40:40 Vision will see ASX200 companies pledging their commitment and putting plans in place to drive and embed structural change across their organisation and the ASX200.


To support this goal, 40:40 Vision will:

  • track gender split across all ASX200 companies and against the 40:40:20 target
  • benchmark all ASX200 companies including those not signed on to 40:40 Vision
  • recognise signatories to 40:40 Vision and how they are tracking against their pathway targets
  • become a platform for sharing challenges, innovation and excellence in practice. 


  1. Pledge to achieve gender balance (40:40:20) in executive leadership by 2030.
  2. Declare medium and long-term gender targets for 2023 and 2027.
  3. Make their plan public to employees, shareholders, investors and the business community.
  4. Report annually on how they are tracking against targets.


Investors can get involved by signing the investor statement, and committing to:

  • actively engage with companies on the gender diversity of their executive team to convey the high level of importance that we and our clients and members, place on this issue
  • encourage companies to sign on to 40:40 Vision to demonstrate their long-term commitment to achieving gender balance
  • hold companies to account on meeting their gender balance targets and commitments under 40:40 Vision. 


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