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Strengthening Canada’s Research Capacity: The Gender Dimension

The Council of Canadian Academies. Strengthening Canada’s Research Capacity: The Gender Dimension. Author, Ottawa, 2012. Pages: 252.

This report assesses factors that influence women’s university research careers in Canada. A panel of 15 Canadian and international experts from diverse fields analysed the factors that influence the career paths of women from the early years onwards. Although improvements have been made in increasing the number of women pursuing university research careers, the report concludes that “there are still gender equity challenges that must be overcome and the passage of time will not be enough to ensure parity.” The results show that women’s progress in Canadian universities depends on discipline and ranks and that the factors influencing the career paths of women arise early on in life, with the prevalence of gender stereotypes and the lack of role models and mentors. A rigid tenure track structure and challenges in the work-family life balance also influence women’s career paths in academia.

The Council of Canadian Academies