Women in Biology
The Internet Launch Pages

Getting Started: Reports and Statistics

This page cites useful reports and statistics. These studies, many from the government, provide sources of data for many aspects of the biology profession. Interior pages in this section include information about women's history, as well as education, and mentoring. There's also a page with organizations focused on women in science, and links to books, written resources and other sites.
Section 1: Science Careers
Section 2: Women in Science Reports
RECENT REPORTS (since 2000) OLDER REPORTS (the 90s)
  • Women in Mathematics and Science from the National Center for Education Statistics The Women's Issues and Gender differences in Science from the Online Ethics center has abstracts and/or text of these government and NRC reports:
  • Women Scientists and Engineers Employed in Industry: Why So Few? (1994)
  • Science programs: on target for women?
  • Increasing Women in Science
  • Gender gap in PhD salaries, NSF 1991
  • A Report on the Glass Ceiling Initiative, US Dept of Labor, 1991, and a sobering
  • commentary about it. But then the Administration changed, and the< A HREF="http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/library/e_archive/gov_reports/GlassCeiling/documents/GlassCeilingPrelimRecommendations.pdf"> final report from 1995 recommended 12 steps to combat the effect. But then things changed again....
  • National Science Policy Study, 1997 NSF sponsored a 1995 conference on women in science. You can read the
  • program, including text of speeches, and the conference reports. The summary of the session on biology says the following: "The problem is not about numbers of women entering the field. It is about the numbers of women in leadership positions....To make a difference, women have to be at the table when decisions are being made, when policy is being set. "
  • A report for the from the European Technology Assessment Network on Women in science entitled Science Policies in the EU: Promoting Excellence through Mainstreaming Gender Equality. This report addresses issues relevant to participation of women in all countries, and makes some important points as women transition from exclusion form science, to segregation within it. "Waiting for equality will not work", the report suggests.
  • Proceedings from the 1999 National Academy of Sciences (NAS) symposium, "Who Will Do the Science ofthe Future? A Symposium on Careers of Women in Science" have been released by the Committee on Women inScience and Engineering of the National Research Council, including a special plenary address by MRC Greenwood focusing on women in the biological sciences. Available from ajurta@nas.edu.
  • Furthering Females, a report of a conference in the UK sponsored by the Athena Project that works to promote women in science. The report (from Science's Nextwave) comments on the difficulty women's programs have getting started. "Maybe institutions should tackle issues such as altering the male perspective of women in the workplace. . .Men seemed threatened by women's networking groups, viewing them as sexist, secretive, and discriminatory. Some wondered why equivalent groups for men only were not established, while others suspected that these discussions were forums for male-bashing. It appears that men inscience, engineering, and technology (SET) need a greater appreciation of the problems that women face in male-dominated fields." Subscription might be required. Some parts of the site are free.
  • From an unexpected source, the Federal Reserve Bank in Atlanta produced this working paper: Does Science Discriminate against Women? Evidence from Academia, 1973–97. The author employs NSF data on awarded PhDs to study correlations between salary, promotion, productivity, and institution. "The most striking aspect of these findings is that very little has changed for women in science in terms of salary and promotion probabilities over the past 24 years." Also available as a .pdf file
  • EMBO and women in the life sciences
  • Also from EMBO: a transcript of a meeting on glass ceiling for women in science. Discusses science at different levels, in different countries (including the US). Features quotes and pictures.