MIT tenures one woman this year

MIT will grant tenure to just one woman this year, a professor in economics, compared to 24 men, reports the __Boston Globe__ today (Dec 6). Last year, five women were granted tenure compared with 19 men. The school's president, Susan Hockfield, said MIT is committed to increasing the rate of women in tenure positions. "We want to be able to show that progress every single year,"

By | December 6, 2007

MIT will grant tenure to just one woman this year, a professor in economics, compared to 24 men, reports the __Boston Globe__ today (Dec 6). Last year, five women were granted tenure compared with 19 men. The school's president, Susan Hockfield, said MIT is committed to increasing the rate of women in tenure positions. "We want to be able to show that progress every single year," she told the linkurl:__Globe,__;http://www.boston.com/news/education/higher/articles/2007/12/06/tenure_at_mit_still_largely_a_male_domain/?page=1 but said that it wasn't always possible. (This year's numbers reflect tenure decisions made by October 30.) MIT also came under fire this year for its handling of questions of race and tenure. Assistant professor linkurl:James Sherley,;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/40634/ who is African-American, appealed his rejection of tenure on the basis of discrimination in February. The incident was later compounded when Frank Douglas, also an African-American and then a prominent professor at MIT, resigned over what he called "unconscious discrimination against minorities," Douglas wrote in an linkurl:article;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/53451/ for __The Scientist.__ Almost ten years ago, MIT began to study gender disparity within its School of Science in an effort led by Nancy Hopkins (who wrote an article for linkurl:__The Scientist__;http://www.the-scientist.com/2005/11/07/s17/1/ on her experience with gender inequity). Since then, there has been some progress: Today, women make up 16% of tenured posts at MIT across all departments, an increase from 10% ten years ago. A National Academies of Science report published last year, __Beyond Bias and Barriers__, made a number of linkurl:recommendations;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/daily/24803/ to academic institutions that would create policies that encourage women to continue careers in science. Editor's note (posted Dec 6): This blog has been updated from a previous version.

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