Gender Analysis NHMRC Data 2001 to 2015 - Descriptive Analysis and Quantitative Investigation of the Determinants of Success

Laurie Brown, Jinjing Li, Hai Anh La, Xiaodong Gong

Research output: Book/ReportReports


The NHMRC is concerned about the success rates for women in NHMRC funded support schemes and the impact that this has both at the early to mid-career stages of women’s research careers and on their ability to be competitive in later career stages. The building up of women’s track records through success in grant applications and the prevention of the loss of female talent and expertise from health and medical research is a priority for NHMRC. NHMRC awards new funding worth around $800 million each year from the Medical Research Endowment Account (MREA) and decides how much of this money is allocated to People Support and to Research Support, and to each scheme within these two areas of funding.
This Report examines the historical trends in the funded rates of female and male applicants seeking support from NHMRC’s People and Research schemes. Two questions are initially addressed:
• Are the differences in funded rates of female and male researchers for any year between 2001 and 2015 statistically significant, and more specifically
a. does the gender difference in funded rates vary between the different People and Research Support schemes? and
b. does the gender difference in funded rates for the Research support schemes vary between women and men who are the lead chief investigator (CIA) or who are named other CIs on the applications i.e. a team member but not the lead investigator?
If so:
• Has the difference in the annual funded rates for men and women from 2006 to 2015 declined over time for the different schemes?
The second part of the Report focusses on a quantitative analysis that aims to answer two further research questions:
• Can any change in funded rates since 2012 be detected for applicants who applied for Career Disruption (by the schemes analysed in Part 1)? and
• Is gender a determinant of funding rates when other factors are taken into account, and which of the following factors or combinations of factors, have the greatest effect on the difference in funded rates between men and women:
• Scheme
• Broad Research Area
• Career Disruption
• Age
• Years Postdoctoral
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCanberra
PublisherNATSEM, University of Canberra
Commissioning bodyNational Health and Medical Research Council
Number of pages115
Publication statusUnpublished - May 2017


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