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Focus On: Risk and Gender

This page is approximately a 2 minute read

A photo of a woman packing up her things in an office, she is holding a box of her belongings.

This short report examines differences between men and women’s perceptions and experiences of risks to their safety around the world.

Perceptions and experiences of risk

The 2021 World Risk Poll is a hugely valuable resource to understand how women perceive and experience a wide range of risks at the global scale. Interviewing over 125,000 people – 66,000 women – across 121 counties, including places where little or no official data on these issues exists, the Poll gives voice to millions across the globe.

We have told some of those global stories across our four themed reports; and here in our first demographic snapshot we present high level findings based on all 2021 World Risk Poll questions, split by sex, to highlight how women’s perception and experience of risk can differ from that of men.

Key findings

  • Women are generally more pessimistic about the future and worried about risks compared to men:
    • 26% of women feel more safe than 5 years ago (vs 29% of men).
    • 36% of women feel less safe than 5 years ago (vs 32% of men).
  • Women report higher levels of worry about potential harms like violent crime (35% very worried vs 28% for men), severe weather (38% vs 31%), and mental health (28% vs 21%) despite similar levels of actual experience.
  • Women report slightly lower resilience globally based on the World Risk Poll Resilience Index (0.53 vs 0.57 for men).

Download the report

World Risk Poll 2021 Focus On: Risk and Gender

The first of our ‘Focus On’ series of short deep-dive reports from the 2021 World Risk Poll data. (PDF, 4.09MB)