There’s great news on the horizon for women in science. The number of female researchers increased across the world from the late 1990s to the early 2010s.  Women account for 38% to 49% of researchers globally with Brazil and Portugal having the largest proportion of female researchers at 49%. The United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Denmark, the European Union, and Australia—all have proportions of female researchers ranging from 40% to 44%. But it’s not all rosy. Female researchers remain a minority in all of the places studied, and on average they publish fewer papers than their male counterparts, which can hinder their future career prospects.  The good news is that research into gender issues continues to grow relatively q...

Women have fared well in the pharmacy profession. Last year more women were practicing pharmacy or working in a pharmacy-related career than their male counterparts, 83.9% versus 65.2%, respectively. And there were more women in managerial positions than ever before—approximately 29% women and 30% men. Independent pharmacy ownership is still a male-dominated area however. Approximately 2.4% of women in the U.S. are owners or partners in an independent pharmacy. Possible reasons for the lack of female ownership may include financial barriers, lack of business/financial acumen, or lack of confidence in ability to secure financing,

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Seventy-four percent of optometry businesses are owned and operated by males. Historical documents from the 1980s reveal that as more women became optometrists owners were worried that customers would shy away from the female optometrist. There was a very real anxiety of those promoting optometry as a profession that a large contingent of women would compromise the prestige and undermine the legitimacy of optometrists as vision care specialists.  Those concerns certainly haven't become realities. 

"The concern that women would damage the profession has been unfounded," Dr. Carlson [first female president of the American Optometry Association and also first woman to lead the North Dakota Optometric Association] says. "Ins...

Landscape architecture is a comprehensive discipline of land analysis, planning, design, management, preservation, and rehabilitation. Some basic figures: 43 percent of architecture students are women; about that same percentage earn degrees, take the registration exam, and report hours for the internship requirement. The American Institute of Architects says that 15 percent of its licensed members are women.  Question:  Where did the women go in this exciting and important career?

Kristine Klim, Landscape Architect

DeWitt, New York 1972

Does anyone remember the key-punch operator?  They were the people who used to spend their workdays punching holes in cards to store information. The punched cards were then fed into mechanical devices such as adding machines and tabulators that read the keyed information. This process, which was limited and not always reliable, was how data were entered before the advent of computers.   As a photographer on this project I had an unlimited supply of female keypunch operators; In 1972 over 95% of all keypunch operators were female.  And the job was not highly respected in society.  When interviewed by local media after returning home to attend her high school reunion, when asked why she left town to become a singer, Janis Joplin replied…”Well...

In 1972 I had the opportunity to photograph women janitors, judges or jewelry makers. Since juggling was not considered a viable career, I eliminated my friend, Anita who was making money at children's birthday parties.  I was able to locate 3 women janitors and an abundance of women earning money designing jewelry.  I could not find a female judge [my first choice] without travelling to New York City. In retrospect, I probably could have waited a decade since women nearly tripled their share of the nation's judgeships between 1970 and 1980 from 6 to 17 percent. Currently about 33 percent of state and federal court judges in the U.S. are women, slightly higher than the global average of 27 percent. Interesting but not surprising... most jewe...

According to recent employment stats, women have been dominating the private security sector for the past two decades. While some may see this as an achievement, in the sense that women have been able to invade a male profession, others in more academic circles view it as worrying. “It can’t be seen as an achievement if the males are leaving the profession to take up better paying jobs. Another consequence of having a large number of women working in the security sector is the fact that many of them are often mothers of young children. Many of them are even single mothers who are forced to leave their children unattended as they seek to make ends meet. Women’s rights activists have often complained, among other things, about the conditions u...

The old farmer stereotype of a white guy in overalls has at least one truth to it: The majority of farmers in the U.S. are white males. Yet a growing number of women are joining their ranks.

Women now run about 14 percent of the nation's farms, up from only 5 percent in the 1980s. Most female-run farms tend to be smaller and more diverse, and many are part of the burgeoning organic and local foods movement. Women have long been involved in agriculture, but even just a generation ago, it was harder for women to take leadership roles on the farm.

Ellamae Candella, Farmer
Phoenix, New York 1972

Since 1980, women have equaled and occasionally outnumbered men at U.S. communication schools, and as many women as men enter the industry straight out of college. But as survey after survey shows, the percentage of women in the field steadily declines after that. Among journalists with 20 or more years of experience, only a third are women. The statistics are similar around the world. With the recent ouster of Jill Abramson at The New York Times, there are now only three female top editors at the 25 U.S. dailies with the biggest circulations.  In 2017 Men still dominate media across all platforms—television, newspapers, online and wires—with change coming only incrementally.

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Finding a female dentist to photograph in 1972 was a challenge.  In 1978, only 15.9 percent of first-year dental students were women.  In 2016, there were 196,441 dentists working in dentistry in the U.S. and 29.8% were female. “Our profession, and society, has come a long way,” said Dr. Mary Martin, president of the American Association of Women Dentists. And while challenges remain for women dentists — addressing the lack of representation in leadership roles and education, closing a wage gap — Dr. Seldin and others say the rise in number of women in the profession has brought, and continues to bring, a number of positive changes.

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January 9, 2017

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