A quarter of professors is female, biggest increases at UG and Erasmus

A quarter of professors at Dutch universities in 2021 is female. The Dutch Network of Women Professors (LNVH) calls it a milestone.

The UG and the Erasmus University in Rotterdam have increased their number of female professors the most, by 3.2 and 3.5 percent respectively. This means the extra efforts at the UG have paid off.

The Groningen university created seventeen Aletta Jacobs chairs last year, specifically aimed at female professors. The UG wants at least 33 percent of professors to be women by 2025. 

Open University is frontrunner

The Women Professors Monitor shows that four Dutch universities have already reached the minimum of 30 percent. These universities are the Open University (the absolute frontrunner, with 42 percent), the University of Maastricht, the Radboud University in Nijmegen, and the University of Leiden.

At the bottom of the LNVH list is the Delft University of Technology, with only 17.9 percent. The Delft university is the only institute that hasn’t reached 20 percent yet. 

The LNVH also looked at the universities’ target figures. If the universities reach their goals, nearly one in three professors will be female by 2025 (31.2 percent). 

Career ladder

The LNVH says things are going well, but there’s still a lot of work to be done. There are fewer women the higher up the career ladder you go.

More than half of people who graduate from Dutch universities are women (53.e4), 44.4 percent of people obtaining their PhDs are, and 43.5 percent of assistant professors are female.

Beyond that, the percentages plummet: 30.4 percent of associate professors are female and only 25.7 percent of full professors are (even if that is considered a milestone). The LNVH predicts that we’ll have to wait until 2040 to see an equal number of male and female professors. 

Lower pay

What hasn’t changed is that women’s pay is still lower. Female academics get offered more temporary contracts than their male counterparts and fewer work hours.

Interestingly enough, female professors usually get more work hours than male ones: 0.87 FTE as opposed to 0.84. 



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