Posts Tagged ‘leadership; gender’

Female Leadership

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

According to a 2008 study by the American Council on Education, just 35% of academic deans at U.S. universities and only 23% of presidents were female. On some campuses, however, female leaders are the norm. At UC Berkeley 7 of 20 deans are women, and the University of Richmond boasts women in 4 out of 5 deanships.

Whether female academic deans bring different leadership styles to their positions is unclear. But their prominence does provide role models to younger women faculty and contributes to the supply of qualified women for top leadership roles.

The Productivity Gap

Monday, January 3rd, 2011

In the academic world, scholarly publications are a form of currency. The more articles you have, the “richer” you are professionally. Since medical leaders tend to come from the ranks of the most intellectually wealthy academics, a gap in productivity could explain why more men than women achieve leadership positions.

To test that theory, researchers at the Mayo Clinic analyzed the careers of senior male and female faculty. Their results, published in January’s Academic Medicine, show that “women produced a mean of 1.94 fewer publications than men per year throughout the first 27 years of service. However, after 27 years of service, mean publications by women increased to 2.72 publications per year compared with a mean of 1.15 publications per year by men.”

Women’s productivity lagged behind men’s for the first part of their careers but then surpassed men’s. Their attainment of leadership positions did not reflect this trend. Only half of the women surveyed ever held a leadership role while 70% of the men did.

The study suggests that academic productivity at mid-career is not a good predictor of later achievement. Consequently, the criteria for selecting leaders should include a broad slate of indicators.