despite having less research space and less influence in their departments. Although the women aspired to leadership positions and felt they had leadership skills, few had been asked to lead. Also noted in the study, one-third of the women reported experiencing discrimination.
A study conducted in 2001 by Morahan et al. found that seven diverse medical schools that had a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office Center of Excellence in Women’s Health had documented large increases in the numbers of women in senior faculty ranks. The number of senior women faculty at one institution increased from 60 to 104 (58 percent) during 1994-1999, compared with an increase from 489 to 542 (11 percent) in the number of senior men faculty. The number of tenured women faculty went up from 51 to 77 (66 percent), compared with an increase from 454 to 475 (5 percent) in the number of men.
Nationally, however, women are still underrepresented in the senior faculty ranks and administrative positions in U.S. medical schools (Morahan et al., 2001). A cross-sectional survey of all salaried physicians in 126 academic departments of pediatrics in the United States revealed that the rank of associate professor or higher was achieved by significantly more men than women. Women in the lower ranks were not as productive academically and spent a lot more time in teaching and patient care than did men in those ranks (Kaplan et al., 1996).
A study that quantified the magnitude of difference in the career advancement of clinician-educator faculty versus research faculty revealed that even after adjusting for other factors, men were almost three times more likely to be at a higher rank in academic medicine than women (Thomas et al., 2004). A multi-institutional study found that women faculty had less institutional support (e.g., research funding, secretarial support) and low satisfaction with career progression (Carr et al., 1998). Compared with men in terms of leadership and national recognition, women faculty were assigned a lower value. In addition, women faculty had the poorest understanding of promotion criteria and the least amount of time available for scholarly activities (Buckley et al., 2000b).
Although a career in clinical research is challenging for anyone, women must deal with considerations that make their entry more challenging. A major difficulty is timing, because the years of most productive career build-