The Glaring Similarity of the EU Central Bank’s Leadership

24 men. One woman. All white.

Other women in the room were there for decoration

The image of the European Central Bank's governing council published on social media by the bank's new president, Christine Lagarde went viral because it was made up of mostly males. 6 members of the council make up the bank's Executive Board. 19 are governors of the euro zone nations' central banks according the ECB. They are all white, dressed in business attire and over 40 years old. The youngest is Madis Müller, from Estonia, age 42.

Lagarde replaced Mario Draghi as ECB president and has invited the governing council, its top policymaking body, to present ideas on how to improve the central bank’s internal discussions. The issue of equality wass part of the agenda for her first council meeting. The meeting was hosted at the Schlosshotel Kronberg a luxury resort in a 19th-century castle. Lagarde became the European Central Bank's first female president in early November 2019. Before that, she was the first woman to head the International Monetary Fund, and France’s first female finance minister before that. But at this meeting the only other women in the room were there for decoration.

Lagarde is expected to deliver a major shakeup to the central bank. Financial Times reports that the reform plans range from holding regular votes on monetary policy to requiring that the president does not pre-announce policy plans. Nevertheless, these proposals could potentially bring widespread changes in terms of market interpretation of future policy meetings. With the new leadership in place, it could also open the door for some deeper makeovers and blockchain technology could be one of them. Lagarde is one of the few key monetary policymakers who is open to digital currency. Her positive stance on crypto highlights the possibility of having a more blockchain-friendly environment in Europe under a Lagarde-led ECB.