Female Department Chairs Help Narrow Gender Gaps for Faculty and Students

November 27, 2018

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Title: Female Managers and Gender Disparities: The Case of Academic Department Chairs

Author: Andrew Langan

A new working paper by Princeton University’s Andrew Langan provides evidence on the effects of female department chairs on workforce composition, gender pay gap, and academic department promotion.

Using data on department chairs in economics, sociology, accounting, and political science from 200 institutions over 35 years, Langan found that female department chairs help narrow three gender gaps for faculty and students:

  1. Assistant professors who work more years under a female department chair have smaller gender gaps in publication and tenure;
  2. The gender earnings gap decreases in the years after a woman replaces a man as a chair; and
  3. As a result of replacing a male department chair with a female department chair, the number of women incoming graduate students increased by 10 percent without affecting the number of men.

To read the full working paper, please visit the Princeton University website.

—Georgiana Mihut

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