Athena Launches STEM Workforce Equity Index 2018

As the champion for women in the STEM workforce, Athena's holding a mirror to the marketplace regarding gender equity. With the launch of its thought-leadership benchmarking research, Athena's STEM Workforce Equity Index is informing the national dialogue with its data-driven approach in pursuit of closing the gender gap. If California - as a global STEM hub - is to achieve gender equity in the workplace, it's essential Athena first benchmark the data, understand the trends, create the instruments for change and hold the STEM community accountable. Knowing where we came from is essential to changing the future. 

STEM Workforce Equity Index Partners

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UCSDe and Biotheranostics.png

Quantity of Women in STEM Occupations

STEM jobs are those requiring science, technology, engineering, or a math-related education. These occupations have a higher growth rate and higher rate of pay. STEM jobs are becoming the focus of the education and training systems. Even with this increased focus on STEM education, data reveals that there continues to be a significant disparity in employment and wage between women and men in the STEM occupations. Based on recent data, women account for 25 percent of the national STEM workforce and 23 percent of the STEM workforce in San Diego County.


A closer analysis of STEM jobs shows the disparity of women in STEM varies by occupation. In 1990, the percentage of women in computer and math careers was significantly higher. As the number of jobs increased in this field, women did not increase at the same rate as men. Conversely, there is a significant increase of women working in the life and social sciences fields. 

San Diego County


Wage Disparities

In 2016, the national median wage in STEM jobs was $86,563 for men compared to $66,825 for women, demonstrating a 23 percent wage gap. In San Diego County, the median wage for men in STEM occupations was $93,724 compared to $67,092 for women, showing a 28 percent wage gap.
Overall, the wage gap between genders has been decreasing since 1990. However, the gender gap still shows fluctuation with periodic increases within the last 26 years.



SOURCE: IPUMS-USA, University of Minnesota,