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An Empirical Study of the Underrepresentation of Women in Philosophy

A new paper by Molly Paxton (Minnesota), Carrie Figdor (Iowa), and Valerie Tiberius (Minnesota) entitled “Quantifying the Gender Gap: An Empirical Study of the Underrepresentation of Women in Philosophy” was published online a few days ago and is available here. (H/T: Feminist Philosophers.) The abstract:

The lack of gender parity in philosophy has garnered serious attention recently. Previous empirical work that aims to quantify what has come to be called “the gender gap” in philosophy focuses mainly on the absence of women in philosophy faculty and graduate programs. Our study looks at gender representation in philosophy among undergraduate students, undergraduate majors, graduate students, and faculty. Our findings are consistent with what other studies have found about women faculty in philosophy, but we were able to add two pieces of new information. First, the biggest drop in the proportion of women in philosophy occurs between students enrolled in introductory philosophy classes and philosophy majors. Second, this drop is mitigated by the presence of more women philosophy faculty.

Update: a reader has sent a link to the full pdf (9 pages) in Google Docs.

Relatedly, Carolyn Dicey-Jennings (Antwerp) will be using hiring data gathered at ProPhi to analyze (among other things) how gender affects obtaining tenure-track jobs and postdocs.
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One response to “An Empirical Study of the Underrepresentation of Women in Philosophy

  1. Anonymous June 27, 2012 at 5:50 am

    This is good stuff. Thanks for the tip, and of course, thanks to Paxton, Figdor, and Tiberius for the important work!

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