‘Tremendous’ gender inequity in Turkish universities

‘Tremendous’ gender inequity in Turkish universities

‘Tremendous’ gender inequity in Turkish universities

Although gender inequality in Turkish academia has been in a steady decline in the last 34 years, the gap at the highest ranks of universities is still extremely wide, a recent report has revealed.

“There is tremendous inequity in terms of upper management throughout academia in Turkey. Only 9.1 percent of rectors are women while only 10.3 percent of vice rectors are women. At the level of deans, 21.3 percent of faculty deanships are held by women,” said a report released by Kadir Has University Gender and Women’s Studies Research Center on May 22.

“Inequality continues at the level of full professor and is the driver of inequality in upper management. Overall, 68.8 percent of full professors are men while only 31.2 percent are women,” added the report, prepared as part of the Systemic Action for Gender Equality (SAGE) Project funded by the European Commission.

In Turkey, 61.8 percent of academics are men and 38.2 percent are women, “The State of Gender [In] Equality in Academia in Turkey” research has disclosed. The proportion of women academics was only 20 percent in 1984.

The data for faculty members covering the years 1984-2018 also show that faculties of architecture, engineering, forestry, theology and veterinary science are decidedly male-dominated. The most unequal faculty is theology where only 10 percent of academics are women.

On the other hand, in faculties of architecture, communication and health sciences women make up the majority. The most female-dominated faculty is that of health sciences where 72.7 percent of all positions are held by women. The faculty nearest to equality is that of business administration.

Turkey’s southeast is the least equal of all of the regions with just 22.8 percent of academic positions held by women.

Meanwhile, the rank of lecturer is dominated by women with 58.9 percent at private universities.

There is gender equality among research assistants at public universities while at private universities, women represent 60 percent of research assistants.

Glass ceiling index

The Glass Ceiling Index (GCI), which compares the proportion of women at the ranks of assistant, associate and full professor to the proportion of women at the rank of professor, has been calculated as 1.22 in Turkish academia.

A GCI point of 1 indicates that there is no difference between women and men in terms of their opportunities for promotion, whereas a score above that points to inequality against women. A score less than 1 would illustrate that women make the majority among the highest ranks.

The GCI score for the European Union’s 28 countries is 1.75.