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Journal Article

Widening the Lens on Gender and Tenure: Looking Beyond the Academic Labor Market

Rebecca Aanerud, Emory Morrison, Lori Homer, Elizabeth Rudd, Maresi Nerad and Joseph Cerny
NWSA Journal
Vol. 19, No. 3, Women, Tenure, and Promotion (Fall, 2007), pp. 105-123
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40071231
Page Count: 19
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Widening the Lens on Gender and Tenure: Looking Beyond the Academic Labor Market
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Abstract

Women's tenure rates are widely and justifiably considered critical indicators of women's status within academia. In this article, however, we question the meaning of this indicator. We find that Ph.D. career path data show women's likelihood of getting tenure is equal to or better than men's in fields dominated by men. Most literature on gender and tenure focuses on family/work balance and academic climate issues, but a review of common labor market explanations in relation to Ph.D. career path data suggests that we need to view the academic labor market as just one segment of the broader labor market. In conclusion, we argue that understanding women's tenure status requires "widening the lens" to include the role of labor market alternatives to academic careers.

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