The representation of women among STEM doctorates has grown over the past decades but the underrepresentation of women in the STEM labor force persists. This paper examines the immediate post-degree employment outcomes of nine cohorts of STEM doctorates who attained their degrees between 1995 and 2013. The results reveal both progress toward gender equity and persistent inequities. Contrary to historical gender disparities, a small female advantage has emerged in the attainment of tenure-track faculty positions, women are increasingly less likely than men to enter postdoctoral positions, and the flow of STEM doctorates into business and industry, which was once male dominated, is now gender neutral. Among the doctorates who do not follow the doctorate-to-faculty career path, women are as likely as men to “stay in STEM,” but less likely to attain research-oriented jobs. Gender segregation in occupational attainment and significant gender gaps in earnings, however, continue to be defining characteristics of the STEM labor force. The results show that the labor market disparities vary across STEM fields but are largely not attributable to the gendered impact of parenthood and dual-career marriage.
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