During the COVID-19 pandemic, most science and medical faculty began working from home, with women reporting a significant decrease in manuscript submissions. Women also report providing 77.6% of the childcare themselves, compared to 61.3% for men, according to the Journal of Women's Health.
A study of faculty in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medicine (STEMM) found that those individuals with children younger than 6 years worked significantly fewer hours after the COVID-19 pandemic. Women reported a significant decrease in first- and co-author manuscript submissions, whereas no significant differences in productivity were reported by men.
Overall, significant disparities were observed in academic productivity by gender and child age during COVID-19 'stay-at-home' orders and, if confirmed by further research, should be considered by academic institutions and funding agencies when making decisions regarding funding, hiring, promotion, and tenure."
Rebecca Krukowski, PhD, Study Co-Author, University of Tennessee Health Science Center
"The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many STEMM faculty to work from home and, especially when young children are in the home, has put a strain on work hours. Publishing is crucial when seeking grant support for research, looking for a job, and seeking promotion and tenure," says Journal of Women's Health Editor-in-Chief Susan G. Kornstein, MD, Executive Director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Institute for Women's Health, Richmond, VA.
Krukowski, R. A., et al. (2020) Academic Productivity Differences by Gender and Child Age in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Medicine Faculty During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Journal of Women’s Health. doi.org/10.1089/jwh.2020.8710.