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Equity Review

This report provides a snapshot of academic staff representation and income in Canada’s universities and colleges in 2016, noting in particular changes in the university sector over the last decade.
There has been a long-standing concern amongst policymakers, economists, and trade unions over the persistent earnings gap between men and women in the Canadian labour market. Adjusting for age, rank and discipline, this study finds a narrowing but persistent earnings gap between male and female academic staff in Canada.
The existence of gender disparities in the awarding of tenure raises serious concerns about the status of female faculty in Canadian universities. Women historically have been far less likely than their male counterparts to be appointed to a tenure or tenure track position.
Women accounted for about three quarters of the growth in enrolment during the 1980s and 1990s. Today, women have made impressive gains at the graduate level. They now constitute a majority of Master’s students across Canada.
The number of female university teachers in Canada has grown sharply over the past twenty years, but women still remain under-represented within certain disciplines and at the most senior academic ranks. The imbalance in the overall representation of female university teachers appears to be decreasing, but some noticeable disparities remain.