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Portrait 2014

Solveig Horne, minister with a blue-blue view of Norwegian integration
“I am now in government,” says the Progress Party’s Minister of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion Solveig Horne. She will stick to the cooperation agreement with the Conservatives and the supporting parties the Liberals and Christian Democrats. There’s a lot of good Progress Party politics right there, says the government minister. She has “no comment” about party colleagues who call for more Progress Party politics.
The salary gap: a stain on Finland’s reputation
When it comes to female representation in business and politics, Finland is a leader in the EU in a range of fields. The Ombudsman for Equality, Pirkko Mäkinen, is particularly pleased with the fact that Finland has better female representation in boardrooms than any other EU country - 27 percent - without having to use gender quotas. Compared to its Nordic neighbours, Finland even has a high proportion of women in political positions of power. But apart from that, she finds little cause for celebration.
Ólafía Rafnsdóttir: Women needed in the wage rate decision process
Iceland is known internationally for its strong female leaders, but men have been the ones deciding wage rates. Ólafía B. Rafnsdóttir became the first female President in 122 years of Iceland’s trade union for commercial workers, VR, when she was elected last year.
Stine Bosse: Keep the Nordic region a sweet spot
The Nordic region is a privileged sweet spot, and should remain one. But it means fully embracing the EU says Danish Stine Bosse, named one of the world’s most powerful businesswomen many times over.
Mikael Sjöberg: rebuilding trust in the Public Employment Service
Mikael Sjöberg again leads one of Sweden’s most important working life institutions. On 17 March the Reinfeldt government appointed him Director-General for the Swedish Public Employment Service. He came from the post of Director-General for the Swedish Work Environment Authority, and before that he led the National Institute for Working Life. His challenge now is to build trust in the Public Employment Service, which has come in for a lot of criticism.
Kvinfo Director: The Nordics can’t afford not to be gender equal
Modern gender equality must liberate both sexes, and the Nordic region must be at the forefront of this. It is too expensive not to, says Nina Groes, Director at the Danish Centre for Information on Gender, Equality and Diversity, Kvinfo.
Ylva Johansson: Minister for Employment with a feminist agenda
Her ambitions are clear: youth unemployment is priority number one. Second on the list is to match jobseekers and jobs. She wants to improve working conditions in female-dominated workplaces and she will fight for more social rights within the EU.
Gerd Kristiansen: Norwegian LO leader with a backbone
There is tension in the air. The leader for Norway’s largest labour organisation is incensed with the government’s labour policies and its lack of cooperation on the proposed new work environment act which would grant employers more powers to hire people on temporary contracts. Her determination can be felt across the room.

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