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Press release 08/03/2018


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“Equality Between Women and Men in the Basque Country 2018” compiles the most relevant statistical information on the situation of women

To celebrate International Women’s Day, today Eustat has uploaded the publication “Equality Between Women and Men in the Basque Country 2018” to its website. The aim is to gather the most relevant statistical information available on the situation of women. To do so, five extensive chapters have been assembled examining population, work, income, health and education from a perspective of gender. Two others will be added later: social life and empowerment.

Among the numerous data contained in the publication, the stark differences by gender in the area of knowledge, detailed in the chapter concerning education, particularly stand out. At university level, women rarely choose engineering among their first choices following the university entrance exam. They lean more toward education and health sciences, followed by social and legal sciences.


Specifically, in a ranking of the 30 most popular degrees, it is particularly noteworthy that men opt for some type of engineering in five of the eight most popular degrees. The other three are Business Management and Administration, Primary Education and Physical Activity and Sports Sciences.

In the case of women, it is necessary to go back to positions 22 and 30 in the ranking to find degrees related to engineering, specifically, industrial and mechanical technology. The eight most widely chosen degrees by women are Primary Education, Nursing, Business Management and Administration, Medicine, Infant Education, Psychology, Law and Social Education.

This chapter covers extensive information of interest:

The education level of both women and men has risen in recent decades and young women have a higher education level than older women, who often have only primary level studies.

There are currently more women who have completed university studies than men and more men who have completed vocational training than women.

The education drop-out rate has been and continues to be higher for boys than girls. The compulsory secondary education, upper secondary education and university graduation rates are higher for women, while vocational training, diploma and technical engineering graduation rates are higher for men.

Five out of every ten female university graduates studied social and legal sciences, while four out of every ten men studied engineering and four studied social and legal sciences.


The average personal income of women and men and the family income according to the main provider are specifically discussed in the publication. This chapter is particularly interesting due to the starkness of the gender gap:

The average personal income of women between 2001 and 2015 was and continues to be lower than that of men. In 2015, the personal income of women was 40% less than that of men (€15,175 versus €25,152).

All income strata showed a greater proportion of men than women above €18,000 per year in 2015. Below this figure, on the other hand, there was a greater proportion of women than men.

Women with no income accounted for 14.6%, four percentage points above men (10.3%), in 2015.

Incomes from work are lower in women and, given that this entails 60% of the total income, this figures directly into the gender gap.

In 2015, families had an average income of €45,180 when the main provider was a man, with the majority of families being concentrated in the intermediate and high strata, whereas if the main provider was a woman the average family income stood at €35,578 and was concentrated in the lowest income strata.



This chapter shows that:

The population of the Basque Country grew 5% between 2001 and 2017 and on 1 January 2017 consisted of 1,119,441 women and 1,056,378 men.

Life expectancy at birth for women was 86 years in 2015 and is above the European average. For men it was 80 years, a difference of 6 years, which is tending to diminish.

The birth rate in 2016 was 8.4 births per one-thousand inhabitants, below the European average (10.0%º in 2015); only a few countries like Portugal, Italy and Greece have rates lower than that of the Basque Country.

Women born abroad accounted for 9.2% of all women in 2016, and men born abroad 8.9% of their group.

Single individuals accounted for 10% of the population and 1 out of every 4 homes in 2015. In 6 out of every 10 cases, that home was inhabited by a single woman.

There were 90,048 single-parent families in 2015. In 87.2% of cases (nearly 9 out of 10), they were headed by women.


The work and activity of the population, the balancing of work life and the degree of satisfaction of women and men, comprise the basis of this chapter. Some of the most significant data are:

Total work includes both paid and non-paid work. Men have contributed more than women in the former and women still contribute more than men in non-paid household chores.

The rate of incorporation of men into household chores is slower than that of women into paid work.

Many women go into paid work in worse conditions than men in terms of working hours, type of contract, professional category suited to level of education, etc. Female activity sectors do not usually offer good working conditions.

The satisfaction of working women who balance work and caring with their personal life is lower than that of working men.


Some notable data compiled in the publication on the state of health, prevalence of illness and healthcare services are:

Women live longer but not as healthily as men. Years lived in poor health were 13.3 for women and 10.3 for men in 2013.

78% of women and 82% of men perceived themselves to be in good or very good health in 2013.

Nearly half of the Basque population suffers some chronic health problem. In women, after hypertension and heightened cholesterol, the most common chronic diseases are osteoarthritis and back and cervical pain.

Mental health, expressed through the prevalence of symptoms of anxiety and depression, has worsened significantly in women, growing nearly 7 percentage points in 10 years.

The publication was designed to be easy to read and visually attractive. The text was reduced to the minimum and the graphical elements were developed with particular care. In addition, locating data and navigating the website was facilitated by distributing the information for each subject in its corresponding tab.

For further information:

Eustat - Euskal Estatistika Erakundea / Basque Statistics Institute C/ Donostia-San Sebastián, 1 01010 Vitoria-Gasteiz Press Service: servicioprensa@eustat.eus Tel: 945 01 75 62

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“Equality Between Women and Men in the Basque Country 2018” compiles the most relevant statistical information on the situation of women

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