Within most UK law firms, women and men are fairly evenly represented in lawyer roles (SRA figures from 2015 indicate 47% of lawyers are women). In larger law firms this figure is lower (c. 27%) and there are further differences in the type of work practiced. In criminal law for example women make up 39% of lawyers, while in private client work they make up 57%. At partnership level across the UK, women comprise around a third of the partner population.
In our survey, 57% of lawyers indicated that they aspired to become partner, with a further 32% reporting that they were unsure (11% did not aspire to partnership). Interestingly, slightly more women (57%) than men (54%) aspired to partnership with more men (15%) indicating that they didn't want partnership compared with just 7% of women. Among this group, the women therefore appear to be more aspirational.