Billboard has published its annual music industry power list, which is usually a spur for us to count the nominees and see just how skewed the gender ratio is. Well, this year Billboard has anticipated that kind of response, and has addressed the issue itself, claiming “modest progress” in the fact that the percentage of women executives has grown from 17% in 2018 to 20% in 2019, and now 21% in 2020.

“As the industry makes progress towards gender parity in its executive suites, the Billboard Power List will reflect that shift, gradual as it may be,” is its verdict: although the fact that 79% of nominees are men offers some context for that ‘gradual’.

The list also has a new structure: out goes the ranking of executives, and in comes the idea of grouping them by sector and company. “That sound you hear is the business’ publicists breathing a collective sigh of relief,” wrote editorial director Hannah Karp. There are still some ‘winners’ though: UMG boss Sir Lucian Grainge is garlanded as ‘executive of the decade’; UMPG boss Jody Gerson is ‘executive of the year’, and there are also gongs for Columbia Records’ Ron Perry and Atlantic Records’ Craig Kallman and Julie Greenwald.

You can read the full list at Billboard via the link above, as well as the separate ‘Impact’ list of “accomplished executives beyond the scope” of the power list. 64% of those are men, by the way.

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