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Presidents Workshop on Gender Equity in Academic Science and Engineering

What and Why?

Nine research institutions participated in a "pilot" workshop to:

  1. Understand the underrepresentation and marginalization of women science and engineering faculty members within their institutions
  2. Consider what actions they could take, collectively and individually, to address this underrepresentation and marginalization

Where and When?

This workshop was hosted at MIT on January 28-29, 2001.


Presidents, provosts, and senior women faculty from each institution attended (see complete participants list). The nine participating institutions were:

  • California Institute of Technology
  • Harvard University
  • MIT
  • Princeton University
  • Stanford University
  • University of California—Berkeley
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Yale University


At the conclusion of the workshop, the heads of the nine delegations signed the following statement:

Gender Equity in Academic Science and Engineering

Institutions of higher education have an obligation, both for themselves and for the nation, to fully develop and utilize all the creative talent available. We recognize that barriers still exist to the full participation of women in science and engineering. To address this issue, we have agreed to work within our institutions toward:

  1. A faculty whose diversity reflects that of the students we educate. This goal will be pursued in part by monitoring data and sharing results annually.
  2. Equity for, and full participation by, women faculty. This goal will be pursued in part by periodic analysis of data concerning compensation and the distribution of resources to faculty. Senior women faculty should be significantly involved in this analysis.
  3. A profession, and institutions, in which individuals with family responsibilities are not disadvantaged.

We recognize that this challenge will require significant review of, and potentially significant change in, the procedures within each university, and within the scientific and engineering establishments as a whole.

We will reconvene to share the specific initiatives we have undertaken to achieve these objectives.


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