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Leaving Careers in IT: Gender Differences in Retention

  • Paula Stephan


  • Sharon Levin

The low prevalence of women in the information technology (IT) workforce has received considerable attention in recent years. The focus of much of this discussion concerns how women can be recruited into careers in IT by making careers more attractive and accessible to women. The size of the IT workforce depends on retention as well as recruitment. The focus of this study is on retention, examining factors related to retention and how retention varies by gender. Data for the study come from the Scientists and Engineers Statistical Data System (SESTAT) compiled by Science Resources Statistics (SRS), National Science Foundation (NSF). We find that retention varies by gender and that a sizeable proportion of IT-trained women who are not working in IT jobs leave the labor force rather than take positions in other occupations. We also find that marriage and family play different roles for women and men in affecting retention. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005

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Article provided by Springer in its journal The Journal of Technology Transfer.

Volume (Year): 30 (2005)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
Pages: 383-396

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jtecht:v:30:y:2005:i:4:p:383-396
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  1. Claudia Goldin, 2004. "The Long Road to the Fast Track: Career and Family," NBER Working Papers 10331, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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