Paying the price: The impact of maternity on career progression of women scientists and engineers in Europe

Herman, Clem (2009). Paying the price: The impact of maternity on career progression of women scientists and engineers in Europe. In: Beiträge von Ihsen, Susanne; Klumpers, Johannes; Pageler, Sylke; Ulrich, Roya and Wieneke-Toutaoui, Burghilde eds. Gender and Diversity in Engineering and Science. Dusseldorf: VDI - The Association of German Engineers, pp. 47–56.

URL: http://www.buchhandel.de/detailansicht.aspx?isbn=9...

Abstract

Women have succeeded in entering professional careers in science, engineering and technology in increasing numbers, yet there are still few women in higher level positions especially within major global companies. This paper draws on qualitative interviews with 28 female scientists and engineers from across Europe, to highlight the career costs that they experience as a result of taking maternity leave and of subsequently working part time. Some of the assumptions within company culture that prevent women who return after career breaks from achieving their full potential are explored. These include the importance given to availability, visibility and flexibility, as well as the impact of different cultural norms relating to gender and parenting

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