Women account for 48% of researchers in public scientific bodies and 43% in universities in Spain, figures that have remained stable for more than a decade. However, women are only 16% of the rectors, 21% of the professors and 25% of the researchers in the highest positions in the ranking of public research organizations, such as the CSIC.
These data "are far from being desirable for science in Spain", lamented this morning Ángeles Heras, Secretary of State for Universities and R + D + I, during the presentation of the report Scientists in figures, which is made since 2007. The document shows one more year "clear evidence of a vertical gender segregation", according to Heras, but with slight advances. The rectors are only 16% today, but in 2017 they were 8% and in 2015 they were 2% (a woman of 50 rectors).
These data "are far from being desirable for science in Spain," laments Secretary of State Ángeles Heras
The situation has also improved slightly in front of the eight public research organizations. In November 2017, women were 0% of the general directors or presidents of these entities and now they are 37.5%, thanks to the appointment of Rosa Menendez chemistry as head of the CSIC, of the Esther Esteban agronomist command of the National Institute of Agricultural and Food Research and Technology (INIA) and the cardiologist Raquel Yotti as the new director of the Carlos III Health Institute, the leading biomedical research organization in Spain.
"We see a scarce presence of women in positions of greater prestige and responsibility in decision-making, despite the fact that for quite some time now there has been balance in the basic area and in the students," Heras warned.
The report also notes large differences in the percentage of students enrolled in the different branches of education of public universities. In engineering and architecture, women are 25%, one point less than the previous year. "The number of students in these careers has decreased. That means they are not attractive for girls and young women, "said Heras. "It is necessary that girls see that it is a beautiful vocation," he said.
Beyond the branch of engineering and architecture, the document shows a notable majority of women among students of the public university: they are 72% in health sciences, 60% in social and legal sciences, 62% in arts and humanities and 51% in science.
Also this Monday, the European statistical agency has confirmed that the male presence in the professions of science and technology continues to be the majority in the European Union. According to Eurostat, of the almost 18 million employees in both branches, 59% were men and 41% were women. The difference is abysmal among specialists in high and medium technology, where 83% are men, and more reduced in the service sector (55%). The data correspond to 2017, the last year for which there are figures.
In Spain, the proportion of female engineers and scientists is above the community average. Almost 1.4 million professionals, 52.3% are men and 47.7% are women. Lithuania, Bulgaria, Latvia, Portugal and Denmark are the only countries in the EU where the female presence is greater. While Hungary, Luxembourg, Finland and Germany are in line with just one woman for every three employees in the sector.