Pay inequality prevelant in Russell Group universities.

Less than 30% of the highest paid university staff in the Russell Group are women

Margaux Martinez
13th March 2023
Image credit: Openclipart
While universities promote gender equality, they sometimes forget to apply it themselves. Women are often underrepresented in the highest paying jobs.

Data from the Higher Education Statistic Agency (HESA) reveals that, on average, 30 percent of staff earning the most (£63,668 and higher) are women. In the Russell Group, that number is even lower. In the University of Imperial for example, that number goes as low as a fifth.

Dr Helen Kowalewska, a professor at the University of Bath explained this inequality by the fact that women still perform “the lion’s share of [family responsibilities]” which restricts them in the hours they can work. As well as having to leave academia because of insecure contracts, women do not have the same research opportunities, which do not allow them to move up in the field. All of these things combined are regrouped in the theory of the ‘glass ceiling’ which explains how women are restricted from high positions and better paying jobs. 

All of these things combined are regrouped in the theory of the ‘glass ceiling’

In Newcastle, this inequality is also important. 43.38 percent of all staff are women but only 30.97 percent of people in the top pay bracket are women. In preparation for Women’s Rights’ Day taking place on the 8th of March, posters have been hung around campus detailing this inequality. Their goal is to inform students on this inequality. According to them, women in academic roles are paid 11.4% less than men. Newcastle still has a long way to go to ensure an actual equality between men and women at work.

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