Improving the career progression of women and ethnic minorities in public health universities has been a longstanding challenge, which we believe might be addressed by including staff diversity data in university rankings. We present findings from a mixed methods investigation of gender-related and ethnicity-related differences in career progression at the 15 highest ranked social sciences and public health universities in the world, including an analysis of the intersection between sex and ethnicity.
In the past 50 years, significant progress in women's equality has been made worldwide. Western countries, particularly European countries, have implemented initiatives to attain a more gender-balanced workforce with the introduction of family friendly policies, by trying to narrow the gender pay gap and by promoting women's career progression. In academia, however, fewer women reach top leadership positions than those in the political arena. These findings suggest that academia needs to carefully evaluate why these new policies have not been very effective.