A Global Diversity and Inclusion Report from BP and Rigzone shows that career prospects for women in the oil and gas industry are improving with an increasing number of women taking advantage of opportunities the industry offers.

The report surveyed over 3,000 industry professionals to gauge female representation in the energy sector. The majority of those polled reported that they believe the industry is slowly becoming less male-dominated but that it still needs to do more to ensure energy careers are attractive to women. This finding is especially interesting as nine out of ten of the respondents were male and 60 percent said they expect to see an increase in female representation among new candidates.

Nearly three quarters of those polled (72 percent) believe the oil and gas industry remains male dominated and one in five (20 percent) believe that gender based discrimination still exists; respondents attribute this perception to societal conditioning, family responsibilities and a lack of qualified candidates. Potential solutions to the issue are perceived to be increased STEM programme implementation in schools (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), more flexible working arrangements to accommodate family commitments, and schemes for rewarding increased gender balance within corporations.

Eric Doyle, Regional Director – Europe at Aquaterra Energy, said: “We know that diversity and equal opportunity are integral to building and maintaining successful businesses and it is encouraging to hear that the latest research suggests we are making progress within the oil and gas industry.

“As a company, we actively provide support and guidance for young women looking to join the industry and have seen the benefits of increased STEM programmes in schools and colleges first hand. We are providing sponsorship for Norfolk University Technical College, which will open this September and provide support for young men and women who want to enter the industry.”