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Advancing Women's Leadership
A Series by Marie C. Wilson, President of The White House Project


Women - NOT in the News

October 11, 2005

Did you know that over half of all Sunday morning news talk shows on the five major television networks don't include women? Or that women only comprise 14% of guest appearances overall on these Sunday shows?

We've been wondering....where are the women?

Today, The White House Project releases the results of an eight-month study of the guest appearances by women on the Sunday political talk shows called Who's Talking Now. Since January 2000, we have tracked the presence of women on Meet the Press (NBC), This Week (ABC), Face the Nation (CBS), Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer (CNN), and Fox News Sunday (FOX).

Our most recent study reveals that in terms of total guest appearances on the top five most influential Sunday talk shows, women represent 14% of guests, up from 11% in 2001. We are pleased that there has been an increase in women's appearances, albeit slight-but our findings show that there is tremendous room for improvement.

Why does this research matter? These shows are a critical forum for our nation's political debates. They have an "agenda-setting" effect, in that they tend to influence the priorities of citizens across the country, and they are an important testing ground for would-be Presidents. Unfortunately, right now, America gets most of its news and commentary from male voices and viewpoints. We aim to change that by bringing women to the table-women alongside men-and creating a broader spectrum for debate.

SheSource.org, our new online resource database of women experts which launched TODAY, works to close the gender gap in all media venues, including newspapers, television and radio. Learn more about SheSource.org and our partner organizations at www.shesource.org.

Please take a moment to look at our most recent research. And, as always, thank you for your support.

Marie C. Wilson
President, The White House Project

PS. Don't forget to watch Commander In Chief tonight on ABC at 9/8c. You've helped make the show such a success. It is currently America's top rated show! You and 17 million viewers tuned in last week--up from the 16 million viewers who watched the premiere two weeks ago. Don't miss out!

Marie C. Wilson is president of The White House Project (www.thewhitehouseproject.org) and author of Closing the Leadership Gap: Why Women Can and Must Help Run the World (Viking/Penguin, 2004).

Press release: News Networks Overlooking Women Experts, Study Finds More than Half of Sunday Morning News Shows Donít Include Women; SheSource.org Launched to Close Gender Gap


The White House Project, a national, non-partisan organization, is dedicated to advancing women's leadership across sectors, enhancing public perceptions of women's ability to lead and fostering the entry of women into leadership positions, including the U.S. Presidency. The White House Project is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and can be found online at www.TheWhiteHouseProject.org . Vote, Run, LeadTM is a White House Project initiative to engage young women in the political process as voters, as activists and as candidates for political office and can be found online at www.VoteRunLead.org.



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