The academy must bridge the gender divide

Why are there so few senior women in the academy?

The excuses are well worn, if not by now downright offensive: there are not enough women academics; women do not meet the standards for academic leadership; if only there were enough women with doctorates; and women do not make themselves available for leadership.

Yet every public university in South Africa and abroad contains in one or more policy documents a commitment to gender equity and women’s empowerment in the academy.

And still the data remains the same: women are over-represented in university lecturerships and lower levels of administration but under-represented in professorships, departmental headships and senior management positions.

Why? The first and simple reason is that in the male-heavy leadership of universities, women are simply not a priority.

Read it at the M&G.

Image – M&G