A New Decade of Girls’ Leadership

A New Decade of Girls’ Leadership

The vote is in! What youth think about the gender gap in politics.

The Girl Scout Research Institute recently conducted a national research study of 3,000 girls and 1,000 boys ages 8–21 to better understand how young people define, experience, and aspire toward leadership now and in the future.

The findings in this report—the first in a two-part series—focus on gender, politics, and civic engagement. For example:

74% of girls believe women and men make equally good political leaders.

Youth today know women have what it takes to succeed in politics and they want more equal gender representation in Congress.

  • More than 7 in 10 young people believe women and men make equally good political leaders.
  • Three in four young people know that the current U.S. Congress consists of more men than women and want to increase the number of women elected.
68% of girls and young women have engaged in civic or political activities

Girls and young women are finding ways to civically engage and take action!

  • 62% of young women ages 18–21 intend to vote in the November 2020 election, including 82% of those who are already registered.
  • Among girls who aren’t old enough to vote, nearly two in three (65%) have engaged in civic or political activities—getting involved in causes they care about, supporting their local communities through volunteer work, and/or reaching out to their elected officials.
59% of girls want to be a future leader in advocacy, in public service, or as an elected official

And looking into the future, girls want to take the lead in public service and advocacy!      

  • 82% want to make a positive impact on society through their work and nearly all want a future workplace where employees are treated fairly and paid equally, regardless of gender.
  • Nearly 6 in 10 (59%) are interested in being a future leader in advocacy or public service, or having a career as an elected official. 
  • Girls care most about the environment, girl’s and women’s issues, LGBTQ and racial equity, and disability rights.

Download A New Decade of Girls’ Leadership report (PDF)

This research is brought to you by the generous support of the The David and Lura Lovell Foundation.