I picked the following Wikipedia article on the Global Gender Gap Report for my evaluation:
I created the Global Gender Gap Reports at the World Economic Forum starting in 2006 and have co-authored it ever since along with Professor Ricardo Hausmann, Director, Center for International Development, Harvard University and Professor Laura Tyson, University of California, Berkeley. I am currently working on the Report’s next edition, due for release on October 24, 2012.
The article provides a basic introduction to the Global Gender Gap Reports, contains a map providing a visual snapshot of country performance and several tables displaying the country rankings and scores, globally and by region. The article provides clear information on key concepts captured in each of the 4 subindexes of the Global Gender Gap Index. Some direct quotations from the Report and the accompanying press release also provide information on the overall methodology, the Report’s purpose and information on the performance of the highest and lowest ranking countries.
There are three types of weaknesses in the comprehensiveness of the article: outdated information, lack of clarity and omission of key points. The opening line mentions the 2010 Report (even though edits have been made to this article as recently as August 2012) and is hence a little dated as the latest edition of the Report was released in 2011. In terms of lack of clarity, the information on data sources is incomplete (13 hard data sources are mentioned but the 14th soft data indicator is not) and the explanation of the interpretation of the scores is written in language that could be misleading. Finally, some key points about global trends across the four subindexes that form part of the fundamental insights from the Report are missing.
The sources of the articles are the World Economic Forum website and direct links to all 5 editions of the Report between 2006 and 2010. No other sources are cited. I find this to be sufficient for the purposes of this article as the primary source is being used rather than a secondary source such as a news article on the Report. However, in the future, the article could be expanded to demonstrate the applicability of the data in the Report and its citations in others’ work, as one of the fundamental purposes of the Report is to generate awareness and catalyze new research, policy change, best practices, etc.
The article is very neutral as it refers only to the Report’s content. It does not aim to provide an opinion on the usability or quality of the Report. The article is brief and with the exception of the slightly misleading language referred to above is very readable. The article also adheres to the Wikipedia Manual of Style.
The article’s illustrations are helpful in bringing the data to life. The “heatmap” based on the world rankings helps to show in a quick, visual format where gender parity is best and worst in the world. However there are some notable errors on this map. For example Pakistan (my country!) and Sri Lanka are both incorrectly color colded with Pakistan appearing to be a more gender equal country than it is and Sri Lanka appearing to be worse than it is. The large data table displaying the global rankings is helpful in allowing for year to year comparisons. The 5 highest and 5 lowest countries by region are also an interesting analysis of the data. However some of the regional headings could be improved, for example, the section currently labelled “North America” is actually covering North America, Central America and the Caribbean, the section labelled “Africa” is only looking at Sub-Saharan Africa.
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This blog has been written for academic purposes for the course Media, Politics and Power (DPI 659) at Harvard University (fall 2012).