Inequality in faculty placement

16 Feb

“The problems of academic insularity and flow of good ideas is evident.”

neuroecology

inequality in academia

How does your PhD institution affect your chances at a faculty position?

Across disciplines, we find steep prestige hierarchies, in which only 9 to 14% of faculty are placed at institutions more prestigious than their doctorate…Under a meritocracy, the observed placement rates would imply that faculty with doctorates from the top 10 units are inherently two to six times more productive than faculty with doctorates from the third 10 units. The magnitude of these differences makes a pure meritocracy seem implausible, suggesting the influence of nonmeritocratic factors like social status.

Academia ROCSome factoids:

  • This falloff in faculty production is sufficiently steep that only the top 18 to 36% of institutions are net producers of within-discipline faculty
  • Differences by gender are greatest for graduates of the most prestigious institutions in computer science and business, where median placement for women graduating from the top 15% of units is 12 to 18%…

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