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Study finds men outnumber women on TV

Women are a distinct minority on television, according to new research commissioned by Channel 4.

The study, commissioned to mark the International Women's Day, has revealed a big gender gap on the television. It also found that though females outnumber males in Britain as a whole, only one woman appears on the small screen for every two men.

Younger women are more encouraged on the small screen than those over 40. However, 60 per cent of men on the television are over 40. Men also take up 65 per cent of all possible broadcast roles.

The study revealed that women are well-represented in soaps, but make up just four in ten participants in light entertainment, comedy and drama.

Women appear less in factual programming or news. Even if they get featured in news, it is mostly to discuss "softer" news topics such as health, culture or cookery.

The sample consisted of 386 hours of peak viewing across BBC1, BBC2, ITV1, Channel 4, Five and Sky1.