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Universities, Careers and Women

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Research Symposium:
Universities, Careers and Women

This research symposium brought together leading faculty and researchers in the area of social economics with distinguished speakers in business, universities and the professions. The speakers presented research and observations on the impact of the revolution in participation rates of women in higher education and on their subsequent career advancement in the professions — including law, business, medicine, engineering, science and academia. A panel of leading practitioners and academics discussed the implications of these research results for today's education of women in American universities.

Friday September 19, 2008
8:30 AM – 2:00 PM
Venue: The Italian Academy

8:30 – 8:45 AM

Breakfast and Conference Registration

8:45 – 9:00 AM

Welcome and Introduction (Video link on YouTube)
Ann Bartel
Merrill Lynch Professor of Workforce Transformation;
Director, Human Resource Management Program, Columbia Business School.

Bruce Kogut
Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Professor of Leadership and Ethics;
Director, Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Center, Columbia Business School.

9:00 – 9:45 AM

Keynote Presentation: "Education and Careers: Insights from The Harvard and Beyond Project"

Claudia Goldin
Henry Lee Professor of Economics, Harvard University. (Related Academic Papers below | Video link on YouTube)
(35 minute presentation, 10 minute Q & A)

9:45 – 11:15 AM

Research Panel: "Women in the Professions: Business, Medicine, Law, Engineering, Science and Academia"
Janet Currie
Professor and Chair, Department of Economics, Columbia University.

Marianne Bertrand
Fred G. Steingraber/A. T. Kearney Professor of Economics, Chicago University:
"Gender Gap for Young Professionals in the Financial and Corporate Sectors." (Download presentation PDF)

Lawrence Katz
Elisabeth Allison Professor of Economics, Harvard University:
"Do Career-Family Trade-Offs Differ Across the Professions?" (Download presentation PDF)

Anne Preston
Professor of Economics and Department Chair, Haverford College:
"Why do Women Leave Science?" (Download presentation PDF)

Jessica Reyes
Assistant Professor of Economics, Amherst College.
"Women in Medicine: What does equality look like?" (Download presentation PDF)

(15 minute presentations, 30 minute Q & A)

11:15 – 11:30 AM

Coffee Break

11:30 – 1:00 PM

Panel discussion: "Career Issues Faced by Women in Universities and in Business"
Debora Spar (Moderator)
President, Barnard College.

Muriel Niederle
Associate Professor, Stanford University:
"Gender Differences in Competition and Task Choice." (Download presentation PDF)

Subha V. Barry
Managing Director and Head of Global Diversity & Inclusion, Merrill Lynch.

Philip Berry
Managing Principal of Berry Block and Bernstein LLC.

Geraldine Downey
Vice Provost for Diversity Initiatives;
Professor of Psychology, Columbia University.

1:00 – 2:00 PM

Closing Remarks and Buffet Lunch

Related Academic papers

Goldin, Claudia, and Lawrence F. Katz, “Transitions: Career and Family Life Cycles of the Educational Elite,” American Economic Review, 2008, 98(2): 363–69.

Goldin, Claudia, in R. Ehrenberg and F. Blau, eds., “Career and Family: College Women Look to the Past,” Gender and Family Issues in the Workplace, New York: Russell Sage Foundation Press (1997), pp. 20-58.

Goldin, Claudia, in R. Ehrenberg and F. Blau, eds., “The Long Road to the Fast Track: Career and Family,” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 596 (Nov. 2004), pp. 20-35.

Niederle, Muriel, and Lise Vesterlund, “Do Women Shy away from Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?,” Quarterly Journal of Economics, August 2007, Vol. 122, No. 3: 1067-1101.

Preston, Anne, “Women Leaving Science,” conference paper, Spring 2006.

Reyes, Jessica Wolpaw, “Reaching Equilibrium in the Market for Obstetricians and Gynecologists,” American Economic Review, 2007, vol. 97, issue 2, pages 407-411.

Economists consider the pay gap

When women rank high, firms profit

Lucking out or level playing field?


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Program Brochure

View the Bernstein Center brochure, Ethical Challenges in Business