UNIVERSITIES are being urged to halt a “terrible waste of talent” after research identified a vast under-representation of women and black and ethnic minority at the level of professors.
One in five professors are women and one in 14 have a black and ethnic minority background, said the University and College Union.
But elsewhere women make up almost half of non-professional academic staff
The union estimates that as the current pace of change, it will take almost 40 years for the proportion of female professors to reach the same as that of other women staff in universities and almost 16 years for black and ethnic minority staff. Meanwhile the gender pay gap among professors was around 6 per cent in favour of men.
UCU general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: “We are allowing thousands of staff, who have built up years of knowledge and experience, never to realise their full potential. It’s like athletes training to Olympic standard but never entering a Games.
“We want universities to take decisive action to stop this terrible waste of talent. They need to examine the reasons why women and black and minority ethnic staff stop climbing the career ladder.”