Why do women leave science and engineering?

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


The author uses the 2003 and 2010 National Survey of College Graduates to Examine the higher exit rate of women compared to men from science and engineering relative to other fields. The author finds that the higher relative exit rate is driven by engineering rather than science, and that half the gap can be explained by the relatively greater exit rate from engineering of women dissatisfied with pay and promotion opportunities. family-related constraints and dissatisfaction with working conditions are found to be only secondary factors. The relative exit rate by gender from engineering does not differ from that of other fields once women's relatively high exit rates from male fields generally are taken into account.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-226
Number of pages28
JournalIndustrial and Labor Relations Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


  • Exit rate
  • Gender
  • NSCG
  • Science and engineering


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