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Academic careers: The factors that cause inequality - avril 2016

Conference in Social Psychology, Utrecht University (NL)

April 7 2016 | 10:15-12:15 | Uni Mail | 1170

Plus de 80 chercheuses et chercheurs ont participé à cet événement

Welcome speeches
Prof. Sabine Sczesny, President of the Swiss Psychological Society and Prof. Guido Gendolla, President of the Section of Psychology, UNIGE.

Only quality counts! by Prof. Naomi Ellemers

Academic careers, awards, and research grants are all allocated on the basis of scientific quality. Women are well represented among university students and PhD’s, yet their numbers become smaller in higher academic positions. Does this imply women are less suitable than men to conduct science? Are they less talented and ambitious, or do they set different life priorities than men do? Does the implementation of diversity programs imply that scientific quality is less important than gender? In this talk I will review scientific evidence on this topic. Elucidating important causes of gender differences in academic career success also helps understand which policy measures are (un-)likely to be effective.
Prof. Naomi Ellemers is a professor of social and organizational psychology, appointed as a Distinguished University Professor at the University of Utrecht the Netherlands. In experimental and organizational settings she examines basic psychological processes relevant to diversity and bias and how these relate to a range of relevant outcomes for the individual and the organization, such as career development, work satisfaction and compliance, employee health, and innovation. For this work she received a number of important distinctions and awards, including the highest scientific distinction in the Netherlands, the NWO Spinoza award. She was elected member of the Dutch Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), and corresponding Fellow of the British Academy (FBA). Together with three colleagues she launched the website, to promote equal opportunities for women in academia.


How are women affected by the underrepresentation of women in academia? by Prof. Belle Derks

Following the first talk on causes of gender disparities in academia, I will present research on the consequences of these disparities for female academics. How are female academics affected by the underrepresentation of women in higher academic ranks? How do they perceive their own career opportunities and how does this affect their ambition and career commitment? How does the underrepresentation of women in academia lead to the “Queen-Bee-phenomenon” whereby female professors are sometimes even more critical of their female PhD students than male professors are? What can the university organization do to prevent this from happening? In this context, I will also present the outcomes of our recent survey among male and female academics at the University of Geneva to show organizational factors that allow women in academia to reach their optimal performance.
Belle Derks is full professor of Psychological Perspectives on Organisational Behaviour within Institutions at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. She studies the psychological consequences of the negative stereotypes that women and ethnic minorities face in work- and educational settings. An example of this work is her research on the Queen Bee phenomenon, e.g., women who dissociate from other women to get ahead in a masculine organization. For her research she acquired several prestigious grants, such as the NWO VENI (2008) and NWO VIDI (2015). Since 2016 she is a member of the Young Academy (the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences).

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Organisation: Dr. Klea Faniko, Utrecht University (NL) & Equal opportunities office, UNIGE