Gender Gaps in Academia: Global Evidence, 1900-1969

Category: Applied Microeconomics and Organization Seminar
When: 03 February 2021
, 14:00
 - 15:00


We document gender gaps in academia along the hiring, publication, citation, and promotion dimension. For this purpose, we hand-collect a new database containing around half a million university academics in all academic subjects covering six cross-sections from 1900 to 1969 for an almost comprehensive set of universities in a large set of countries. We show that the world-wide share of women in academia rose from about one percent to 12 percent in 1969 with large variation across countries and subjects. The United States, in particular, and Anglo-Saxon countries, more broadly, have been at the vanguard of hiring women; Germanic and Scandinavian countries have lagged substantially. We also document a negative gender gap in publications. The publication gap varies substantially across countries and is smaller, or even positive, in countries with very low shares of women. We also document a negative gender gap in citations, even after controlling for characteristics of papers using text-based machine-learning techniques. Finally, we show negative gender gaps in the probability of promotion, even after controlling for publications and citations, with particularly negative gender gaps for the promotion to full professor.