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Buying science and selling science: gender differences in the market for commercial science

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  • Fiona Murray
  • Leigh Graham
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    Abstract

    Growing opportunities for academic scientists to commercialize their science has led to a new commercial marketplace. Recent evidence suggests that “commercial science” participation is characterized by gender stratification. Using interviews with life science faculty at one high-status university we examine the mechanisms that instituted, reinforced, and reduced the gender gap in commercial science between 1975 and 2005. We find gender differences from processes on both the demand—(opportunity) and supply—(interest) sides; of deeper significance are the intersections between these sides of the market. Specifically, explicit early exclusion of women left them with fewer opportunities in the marketplace, weakening their socialization and skills in commercial science. This uneven opportunity structure left senior/mid-career women with fewer chances to confront the ambiguities of this new practice, resulting in their greater ambivalence. Gender differences remain significant among junior faculty but we find their decline prompted by greater gender-equality in advisor mentoring and the presence of institutional support which together have started to reshape the supply-side of commercial science. Copyright 2007 , Oxford University Press.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Industrial and Corporate Change.

    Volume (Year): 16 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 4 (August)
    Pages: 657-689

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:indcch:v:16:y:2007:i:4:p:657-689

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    Cited by:
    1. Haeussler, Carolin & Colyvas, Jeannette A., 2011. "Breaking the Ivory Tower: Academic Entrepreneurship in the Life Sciences in UK and Germany," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 41-54, February.
    2. Ding, Waverly & Choi, Emily, 2008. "Divergent Paths or Stepping Stones: A Comparison of Scientists’ Advising and Founding Activities," Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series qt4907j25p, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley.
    3. Lissoni, Francesco & Fabio, Montobbio, 2012. "Inventorship and authorship as attribution rights: An enquiry into the economics of scientific credit," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 201221, University of Turin.
    4. Hunt, Jennifer & Garant, Jean-Philippe & Herman, Hannah & Munroe, David J., 2013. "Why are women underrepresented amongst patentees?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 831-843.
    5. Perkmann, Markus & Tartari, Valentina & McKelvey, Maureen & Autio, Erkko & Broström, Anders & D’Este, Pablo & Fini, Riccardo & Geuna, Aldo & Grimaldi, Rosa & Hughes, Alan & Krabel, Stefan & Kitson,, 2013. "Academic engagement and commercialisation: A review of the literature on university–industry relations," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 423-442.
    6. Abreu, Maria & Grinevich, Vadim, 2013. "The nature of academic entrepreneurship in the UK: Widening the focus on entrepreneurial activities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 408-422.
    7. Tyler Wry, 2009. "Does Business and Society Scholarship Matter to Society? Pursuing a Normative Agenda with Critical Realism and Neoinstitutional Theory," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 89(2), pages 151-171, October.
    8. Larsen, Maria Theresa, 2011. "The implications of academic enterprise for public science: An overview of the empirical evidence," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 6-19, February.
    9. Jeannette Colyvas & Kaisa Snellman & Janet Bercovitz & Maryann Feldman, 2012. "Disentangling effort and performance: a renewed look at gender differences in commercializing medical school research," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 37(4), pages 478-489, August.
    10. Anne Miner & Yan Gong & Michael Ciuchta & Anthony Sadler & John Surdyk, 2012. "Promoting university startups: international patterns, vicarious learning and policy implications," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 213-233, April.
    11. Benjamin Clark, 2011. "Influences and conflicts of federal policies in academic–industrial scientific collaboration," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 36(5), pages 514-545, October.
    12. Lam, Alice, 2010. "What motivates academic scientists to engage in research commercialization: ‘gold’, ‘ribbon’ or ‘puzzle’?," MPRA Paper 30849, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Goethner, Maximilian & Obschonka, Martin & Silbereisen, Rainer K. & Cantner, Uwe, 2012. "Scientists’ transition to academic entrepreneurship: Economic and psychological determinants," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 628-641.
    14. Ding, Waverly & Choi, Emily, 2011. "Divergent paths to commercial science: A comparison of scientists' founding and advising activities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 69-80, February.
    15. Krabel, Stefan & Mueller, Pamela, 2009. "What drives scientists to start their own company?: An empirical investigation of Max Planck Society scientists," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(6), pages 947-956, July.

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