While women form about half of PhD students in Western countries, previous studies have shown that female doctoral graduates are underrepresented in senior positions and have lower earnings compared to their male counterparts within and outside academia. Less is known however about the role of gender in determining the odds of securing a permanent position among doctorate recipients. In this study, we use data from the UK Doctoral Impact and Career Tracking Survey from 2013 to explore the career trajectories of doctoral graduates within seven to nine years after earning their degree. We find that in every observed time point following graduation (0.5, 3.5, and 7–9 years), men are significantly more likely to work in a permanent job than women are. Furthermore, gender gaps in permanent employment are particularly pronounced in the private sector and in non-academic occupations. Using a nested logistic regression model, we find that the higher propensity of female doctoral graduates to work in part-time employment compared to their male counterparts, in combination with other differential employment characteristics has cumulative negative implications on their likelihood of securing a permanent position.
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