CSSI Research Seminar: Aaron Clauset

Lederle Graduate Research Center, Room A112

Gender and Retention Patterns Among US Faculty

*Co-sponsored with ADVANCE

Women remain underrepresented among faculty in nearly all academic fields in the U.S. However, despite broad interest in measuring, explaining, and mitigating gendered attrition in faculty careers, the scale and heterogeneity of American higher education has impeded a full understanding of its magnitude and variation, and whether men and women leave academia for similar or different reasons. 

Using a census of 245,270 tenure-track and tenured professors at U.S.-based PhD-granting departments, we show that women leave academia overall at higher rates than men at every career age, in large part because of strongly gendered attrition at lower-prestige institutions, in non-STEM fields, and among tenured faculty. These results contrast with the historical focus of studies on high-prestige institutions, on STEM fields, and on pre-tenure faculty. A large-scale survey of the same faculty indicates women are more likely to feel pushed from their jobs and less likely to feel pulled towards better opportunities, and women leave or consider leaving due to workplace climate issues more often than work-life balance issues, which is the most popular explanation of gendered faculty attrition.

Aaron Clauset
Speaker Institution
University of Colorado Boulder, Computer Science
Speaker Biography

Aaron Clauset is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and the BioFrontiers Institute at the University of Colorado Boulder. He is an internationally recognized expert on network science, data science, and machine learning for complex systems. Clauset is an internationally recognized expert on network science, data science, and complex systems. He received the 2016 Erdos-Renyi Prize in Network Science, and his research has appeared in prestigious scientific venues like Nature, Science, PNAS, JACM, STOC, AAAI, SIAM Review, and Physical Review Letters. His work has also been covered in the popular press by the Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Discover Magazine, New Scientist, Miller-McCune, the Boston Globe and The Guardian. He received a PhD in Computer Science from the University of New Mexico and a BS in Physics from Haverford College, and, prior to coming to Colorado, was an Omidyar Fellow at the prestigious Santa Fe Institute.