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Research and Development in Higher Education Vol. 34: Higher Education on the Edge

July, 2011, 394 pages
Published by
K. Krause, M. Buckridge, C. Grimmer, & S. Purbrick-Illek
0 908557 85 X

There is increasing debate and discussion about the shape of the workforce in Australian universities, which are facing ‘a crisis’ in staffing that will inhibit their ability to undertake teaching and research The increasing number of reports dealing with staffing issues unfortunately do not disaggregate the workforce by sex. This paper presents a brief analysis of (mostly) publicly available data on university employment, exploring gender segregation in the university workforce, with a focus on vertical segregation amongst both academic and general staff. The paper compares segregation in academia against European Union figures, benchmarks academic gender structures against the Australian Public Service, and critiques a recent study (Diezmann & Grieshaber, 2010) that concluded that women and men are now being appointed in equal numbers to the professoriate. The work is part of a larger ARC Linkage project which will provide a more detailed report on employment in the sector. Our analysis to date shows that gender segregation has been reduced but is far from being eliminated.

Keywords: university employment, gender segregation, women