Elsevier has reported a median pay gap of 40.4%, more than twice the UK average of 18.4% and the highest yet reported by a publisher. The company’s mean pay gap stands at 29.1%, also well over the UK average of 17.4%.
Bonuses are awarded to a higher percentage of men (56.5%) than women (45.7%), and the bonuses are higher for men, with a median bonus pay gap of 47.5% and a mean of 30%.
Elsevier employs around 1,200 people in the UK, representing approximately 16% of its global empoyee population.
Men make up 74.4% of the top pay quartile, although the smaller proportion of women in that quartile (25.6%) have a median pay gap in their favour of -8.7%. (No mean figure is provided for the quartile). By contrast, men make up just 27.5% of the lowest-paid quartile, with a median gender gap of 6.3% in relation to women who make up 72% of that quartile.
Reporting the gap, the company stated: “The reason for the total pay gap at Elsevier Limited is that there are more men than women in senior roles, which are higher paid roles, and more women than men in lower paid roles, as illustrated by the Pay Quartile statistics… Many factors contribute to this. For example, Elsevier Limited recruits a lot of employees from STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) industries, which attract more men than women."
The Elsevier/RELX Group statement on diversity and inclusion states that Elsevier's parent company RELX has a global workforce that is 51% female to 49% male, with 43% female and 57% male managers, and 29% female and 71% male senior operational managers. Women make up 36% of the members of the RELX Boards. The statement says the company remains "committed to promoting and enabling equal opportunity, regardless of gender, at every level in our organisation" and has undertaken recent initiatives to promote parity including expanding its mentoring programme for women in technology and launching a mentoring programme for women in senior roles across the Group. It is also expanding it unconscious bias training in many countries this year.
Elsevier itself has attained the first level of the EDGE gender equality certification with a focus area on flexible working; last year Elsevier mapped its flexible working policies across the business as the first step in creating work practices that allow for flexibility for our employees, it said.
Elsevier's pay gap reporting follows that from Taylor & Francis, Wiley, SAGE and Cambridge University Press, as well as from Springer Nature and Pearson.
Staff can share their views on the gender pay gap in a Bookseller survey here.