Table 3: Big four: gender and language

From: New avenues of research to explain the rarity of females at the top of the accountancy profession

Big Four Number of countries Countries with a sex-based dominant language Size of the global board Percentage of females on the global board
Deloitte 142 55% N/a 18.75%
E&Y 150 52% 18 22%
KPMG 151 49% 23 4%
PwC 160 47.5% 18 11%
  1. Footnotes: Data for the number of countries where each Big Four is present is for the year 2016 and was collected directly from the Big Four global websites. The dominant language is the most-spoken language, and the classification regarding whether the dominant language gender marking system is gender-based comes from Corbett (2013). PwC Global Board is defined as “The Board represents the interest of all members of the PwC Network. It has overall responsibility for the governance of PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited and the PwC Network and for oversight of the Network Leadership Team.“ KPMG Global Board is defined as “The Global Board is the principal governance and oversight body. The key responsibilities of the Board include approving long-term strategy, protecting and enhancing the KPMG brand, and approving policies and regulations”. E&Y Global Executive is defined as “The Global Executive is our most senior management body and focuses on strategy, execution and operations. Its membership brings together all the elements of our global organization, including the leaders of our geographic Areas and service lines”. For Deloitte Global Board, we did not find any information regarding the exact composition of the board.